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Summary: We look at the flvor of joy

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"I’ve Got the Joy...’

Galatians 5:22

Introduction:

We used to sing a little chorus: "I’ve Got the Joy, Joy, Joy .. ." Watching many Christians makes me wonder why there seems to be so little joy among God’s people. We seem to have every¬thing figured out except how to be joyful. Joy is a fruit of the Spirit, something we should be developing.

Remembering the word {Fruit} Means work, Act, or deed. Gal.5:22

What’s the meaning if the word Joy?

The Greek word is {chairo} Means A Primary verb to be cheerful, calmly, happy or well off.

A. This morning we began looking at Galatians 5:22 where Paul speaks about the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. Listen as I read it once again. Paul says, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness & self-?control."

Now the very first "fruit" that Paul mentions is love. And as we considered it, we realized that we live in a world that talks a lot about & glorifies the subject of love, but too often real love is missing. As a result, people are looking for love in all the wrong places. So the church needs to become a beacon & an oasis of love in a love-starved world.

B. Now the next "fruit of the Spirit" that Paul mentions is joy. And I ask you, "Do you have that joy?" It’s obvious that many people don’t. And you’ve been around them, haven’t you? They’re grumps, they’re gripers, they’re very negative about virtually everything that happens in life, complaining almost all the time. As a result, they just aren’t much fun to be around.

ILL. One of my favorite stories about a person with a grumpy personality begins with a man going into the doctor’s office. As he walked in, he was met by the receptionist. He told her that he had a sore on his chin that he wanted the doctor to examine.

She said to him, "Down the hall, first door to the right, & take off your clothes." "But ma’am," he said, "it’s just a sore on my chin. I don’t think all that is necessary." She repeated, "Down the hall, first door to the right, & take off your clothes." "But ma’am," he said. "Down the hall, first door to the right, & take off your clothes."

So he went down the hall, took the first door to the right, walked in & saw another man already sitting there in his boxer shorts, shivering. He said to him, "Boy, that receptionist is really something, isn’t she? I just have a little sore on my chin & she told me to come down here, go through this door & take off my clothes." The man in the boxer shorts said, "You think that’s bad? I’m the UPS delivery man."

SUM. There are some difficult people, aren’t there? And what they need is a personality transplant.

C. Let me give you a definition of "joy." "Joy is an evidence of the presence of God in your life." If God is in your life, if you are filled with the Spirit of God, then this fruit of the Spirit will be obvious in your life.

Now don’t mistake happiness for joy. It’s easy to do that. The Bible mentions "joy" or "rejoicing" 330 times. But it only mentions "happiness" 26 times. Happiness depends upon what happens to you. So if all the circumstances are right, then you can be happy. But joy comes from inside.

PROP. This eveing we’re going to identify some enemies of joy. Then we’ll look at a perfect example of joy, & finally, consider the question, "How do we experience that kind of joy?" Now, what are some enemies of joy?

I. You Know You Haven’t Got the Joy When:

A. You are constantly complaining

B. You often withdraw from spiritual life (or life in

general)

C. You are frequently angry

D. You sense constant frustration

E. You are seldom grateful

II. You Haven’t Got the Joy Because You Lost It to:

A. Your own self

1. Self-centeredness is incredibly common

2. Self-centeredness (in all its forms) is the enemy of

joy

B. A focus on circumstances

1. Biblical joy is unrelated to circumstances—Paul is

proof

2. A focus on circumstances limits joy to "the good

times"

C. General negativity

1. The child of God always has reason to be positive

2. Negativity is dishonoring to the Lord

D. A spirit of rebellion

1. A rebellious child is never a happy one

2. Rebellion is a rejection of God’s rule

E. Concern with happiness

1. Happiness is often the enemy of joy

2. Joy is critical; happiness is not

F. Basic disobedience

1. Obedience is the pathway to joy

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