See more in life every day

How can there be joy when there is disease?
How can there be joy when there is sorrow?

First of all, I think that joy and happiness are not the same thing. 

Happiness is fleeting
Joy is deeper
More profound
A connection with God and His Word.

There are times when I feel happiness — a laughter at a funny joke, some slapstick comedy. When I feel a smile at seeing a child at play. 

But I feel joy most of the day. 

Because Jesus brings me joy. Even when I deal with troubles and frustrations I remember I am a child of God. This is something to grab hold to at all times. There is no deadline or stop clock. 

God is there always.

The joy of the Lord warms my heart, stimulates my mind, unleashes creativity, gives me comfort, fills me up and surrounds me with love.

Just a joyful collage by Janis Cox

Reading and Studying God’s Word

I studied Psalm 19:8 this morning using the SIMPLE Bible Study Method.

“The rules of the LORD are right. They give joy to our hearts. The commands of the LORD shine brightly. They give light to our minds (New International Reader’s Version).”

and then I read it in The Message.

“The life-maps of God are right, showing the way to joy. The directions of God are plain and easy on the eyes.”

To find joy follow God’s life-maps

Looking again I saw that in God’s Word how we find joy. I love The Message translation as “life-maps”. How to live a joyful, peaceful life.

I know my life wasn’t always this way. Every day I would look for happiness but my life was not filled with joy and peace. Reading and studying God’s Word has made all the difference. 

The power of God’s Word

There is something powerful in letting God’s Word into our hearts and souls. 

One word I heard from God this morning in my prayer time today was STEEP. I first thought of tea, and how I must wait for the boiling water to sit on my tea bag before I pour the teapot — otherwise I don’t get the full flavour. 

Luke 12:31 says:

“Steep yourself in God reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.”

So that’s how it works — spending time in God’s Word helps us get through the day with a God-perspective rather than a human one. 

So those who talk about God in their lives, those who preach His Word, those who minister to others NEED to be continually steeped in God’s Word.

“Powerful, truth-preserving, God-glorifying, Christ-exalting, soul-ravishing, mission-advancing ministry is sustained by the POWER [my capitals] to see for yourself the glories of God’s word (John Piper).”

We must see for ourselves. Don’t forget to go a day without God’s Word.

So reading a devotional, without reading God’s Word is not enough.
Going to church on Sunday and listening to the sermon and not reading God’s Word is not enough.
Listening to a podcast without reading God’s Word is not enough.

Look at the book — study His Word. 

Listen to Him. Think about it. Meditate on it. Then listen to what He has to say.

“If future generations only learn WHAT we saw, and not HOW to see it for themselves, they will be second-handers. And second-handers cannot last (John Piper).”

I don’t want to be a second-hander, do you?

Do you want to find joy? Then read God’s Word. Learn from it. Get connected to your Maker, your Creator.

When you find and connect with God you will see more in life every day. That’s my acronym for SMILE.

a fridge magnet by Janis Cox

May I pray for you and me?

Lord teach us to read your word. Help us to listen to You through Your word. Let us go deeper, be truer, and get connected to You on a fuller basis. Yes, it will be work, but a work that is worth the joy that we will find in studying Your Word. In Jesus’ name. Amen.

Bible Art by Janis Cox Romans 15:13

Follower of Jesus, writer, artist, podcaster. Author/illustrator of Tadeo Turtle & The Kingdom of Thrim. Illustrator of Remember The Seasons. Writes at JanisCox.com.
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Follower of Jesus, writer, artist, podcaster. Author/illustrator of Tadeo Turtle & The Kingdom of Thrim. Illustrator of Remember The Seasons. Writes at JanisCox.com.

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