Joy & Peace: A Settled Assurance that God is in Control.
My friend Zack shared with us yesterday on rebuilding our lives and everything that pertain to the Kingdom. I listened intensely to him laboring to make us understand the concept. As I listened attentively, I was interrogating myself especially on what I need to rebuild (and in this case rebuild very fast!) At the end, he gave us some points; possibly, to take with us home and I took with me home the following, among many others;
- Do not entertain bitterness in your life
- Avoid complaining and murmuring
- Avoid competing with others
- Be filled with joy and peace, which he said; Joy + peace = strength
JOY + PEACE = STRENGTH
Point number four is what I want to explore, not because the others do not matter but I strongly feel majority of people, including myself ignore the immense value Joy and Peace brings in our lives. This point really moved me and I went home thinking about it. These two words sounds familiar, I have used them in sentences as I write and in conversations as I share with friends but I want them to make a deeper meaning going forward. Year 2020 is here, and what I need most is Joy and Peace because I now understand its power in unlocking everything else I need in my life.
Whereas happiness is dictated by circumstances; Joy is more like a deep abiding. When circumstances change, joy remain intact, unchanged unlike happiness which depends majorly on circumstances. Theopedia, a christian encyclopedia defines Joy as ‘a state of mind and an orientation of the heart. It is a settled state of contentment, confidence and hope.’ My all-time favorite man Rick Warren says “Joy is the settled assurance that God is in control of all the details of my life, the quiet confidence that ultimately everything is going to be alright, and the determined choice to praise God in every situation.” I do not need to explain further for you to understand the concept of joy; it is lays bare from the explanations.
My discovery is that Joy and peace are inseparable, that a person must have Peace to have the capacity for prosperity and greatness. God may hold prosperity back until we build the capacity to enjoy it. No wonder the scriptures say; do not be anxious about anything rather pray with thanksgiving and the peace of God that surpasses all understanding will guard our heart and mind.
Romans 5:1 “Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
My prayer for you…
Peace might not necessarily mean getting everyone else to do what you want him or her to do. Instead, it might imply understanding that people do not always want what we want and do not often believe what we believe. Each one of us has a storyline and we are fighting different kinds of fears. it is more to do with our faith and hope everything is working for our good, even when they do not seem to.
If you have been porous, and may not have contained this understanding in the past, it is time to rebuild the walls such that this revelation does not dissipate leaving you empty. Grab it and run with it just as I have done. Joy + Peace = Strength. Strength to handle all life challenges that come our way, strength to bounce back, strength to say no or yes where necessary, strength to defend your faith, strength to love and forgive and more importantly strength to remain consistent to the things we said we would do.
My prayer for you is that 2020 will marshal great opportunities to mature and grow because true transformation will require the perfect balance of joy and peace manifested through faith.
And to Zack, continue to manifest the Kingdom in all areas of your life, joy and peace in all of your days and thank you for sharing.
Let me end with this favorite song sung by Lynda Randle, God on the Mountain. I believe it will bless you as you celebrate new year.