So, I’ve been contemplating this topic as of a few days ago but haven’t really felt like putting it into words. I still don’t, actually, but I know if I don’t, I’ll forget.
Maybe it’s better if I forget, but I’m gonna go with not forgetting and let it fly. LOL. Fair warning, hopefully this blog won’t offend anyone but if it does, it’s not intentional, just me and my opinions.
First, when I’m referring to joy, I’m thinking of the kind of joy David talks about in Psalm 16:11 (NIV)
11 You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.
There’s good people in lots of different churches. And when I say good, I mean: sweet, kind, fruit-of-the-spirit-exhibiting, Christ-followers. However, after going to many different places of worship, noting what seemed to me to be a collective spirit of heaviness and lack of real joy in one place of worship and seeing the contrast of the general feeling of joyful praise and worship in another, I totally don’t get how good people could stay stuck in the former. I’m not sure if I admire or pity their gumption for sticking out such misery. Churches are so much alike in many ways, in most cases, it’s not the style of worship or the message that is so different, it’s just the overall atmosphere. And as one who grew up in the system of beliefs (not calling out any specific church, just the general way of thinking) of the former, and now gratefully experience the freedom and joyful spirit of the latter, I feel like I see much more clearly BOTH sides. There’s good and bad, right and wrong on both sides, and there are good Christians, bad Christians, and sinners on both sides. But the one thing I love is being happy serving Jesus (and working to be more like Him…yes, I’m still working…I’m totally not there yet), and being around others who feel the same way. I think there’s people who are happy, and they love and serve Jesus, but they don’t seem happy serving Jesus. Obviously, many people DON’T fall in that category, but I think when the general population of a body of people falls into that, maybe that’s a little part of what creates that lack of joy in service (worship service or general serving).
That’s just my take on it. And everyone experiences gloomy days from time to time but if you’re a constant Eeyore, well…
And something else that seems to have a direct correlation to joy: I’ve found His yoke is easy and His burden is light. And when I took up HIS yoke instead of MAN’S yoke….
Well, I found joy, real joy, wonderful joy.
Now I just have to get the rest of the fruit of the spirit growing up in my life.
Love ya, mean it. =)