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In Galatians 5: 22 we read that the fruit of the Holy Spirit is joy. The Greek word means an inner gladness, a deep pleasure which comes from an inner assurance and confidence that God does all things for His good purposes.

This joy is not the same as the joy found in this world which gives only temporary pleasure and is nagged by some incompleteness. In truth, joy found in worldly ways leave an haunting awareness that something could arise and rob joy.

Joy received from God gives Christians the assurance that He does all things well for those who seek Him with all their hearts.

Several things can be said about the believers' joy which is supernatural and is determined by how much nourishment Christians get from the feeding on God's Word and if they are walking in step with the Holy Spirit.

God's joy is given by Him through the Holy Spirit. You must be born again and living in obedience to the written Word. Jesus tells us how to experience true joy. "As the Father has loved Me, so have I loved you. Now remain in My love. If you obey My Commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have obeyed My Father's commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete." (Jn. 15: 9 - 11) Jesus' joy was found through obedience to His Father's will, thus, the source of a person's true joy will be found through living an obedient life to the Lord.

True joy does not depend on circumstances or happiness. Christians experience joy in the midst of blessings as well as in the fire of trials. The best way to have joy is to count all your blessings. When done with a grateful heart, joy will abound in you. Christians can also have joy in great trials. Paul, while in the midst of trials and persecutions, wrote, " trouble my joy knows no bounds." ( 2 Corinthians 7:46)

Joy springs from faith. Romans 15:13 says, "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Joy comes in trusting in God who controls all things and knows what is best for you.

Joy of reward makes and keeps you faithful to the God who created you. Hebrews tells us to "...fix our eyes upon Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the Cross." (Heb. 12:2) Jesus Christ had great inspiration to do the will of His Father. He was looking ahead to that glorious day, when through His blood He would restore fellowship between man and God. Jesus suffered mockery, shame, a brutal beating and suffering upon the Cross so that you can be forgiven and have fellowship with God. There is a day coming when Christians will stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ and non-Christians will stand at the Great White Throne Judgment. Obedient Christians will someday hear "Well done good and faithful servant." Fixing your eyes upon Christ and what he has done, will bring a joy in your labors with the Lord.

Choose the fruit of the Holy Spirit, receive God's joy and discover an inner gladness and have the assurance that God will do what is best for you in the building of His Kingdom.

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