Saturday, April 28, 2012

Happiness v. Joy

John 15:9-17 (NLT, bold words by me)
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. 16 You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. 17 This is my command: Love each other.


1. the emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally good or satisfying; keen pleasure; elation: She felt the joy of seeing her son's success.
2. a source or cause of keen pleasure or delight; something or someone greatly valued or appreciated: Her prose style is a pure joy.
3. the expression or display of glad feeling; festive gaiety.
4. a state of happiness or felicity.


1. the quality or state of being happy.
2. good fortune; pleasure; contentment; joy.
Looking at the definitions, it doesn't seem like there is much of a difference at first, does there.  Read closer - at the end of the day, joy isn't always something that comes from without, it comes from within.  Also, it is more complex than simple happiness.  It something we do more than something that is.  It is called a noun, but it is really a verb, adjective, or adverb really.
Not mentioned in the dictionary, but something that I feel and have been taught in church is that joy is a choice, at the end of the day. 
Not as easy as it seems.  But joy is promised by being is His word and "hearing" His words.  It is promised. 
I have to believe this.

No comments:

Post a Comment