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Summary: Happiness depends on the right happening, but even when things go wrong, you can still have joy. The person whose happiness depends on ideal circumstances is going to be miserable much of the time.

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Introduction:

This is the 2nd part of our study on the book of Philippians.

When you talk about joy, you have to go to the book of Philippians

A little, short book in the New Testament – only four chapters long.

But 16 times in four chapters, Paul says “Rejoice… Be joyful.”

Sixteen times he uses the word “joy” in four chapters.

The amazing thing is, Paul wrote this book while he was in prison

In the darkest days of his life he writes the most positive book in the Bible. .

One of the names for God in Psalms 43 in the Hebrew, the Bible says is:

El Simchathgali which means “I am the God of exceeding joy” –I am the God of overflowing, abundant joy.

If I will paraphrase this, “I am the God who knows how to party”

I have mentioned last Sunday that Paul’s letter to the Philippians is something of a missionary thank you letter, but I found it is much more than that.

It is the sharing of Paul’s secret of Christian Joy!

The Thieves That Rob us of our JOY!

1. Circumstances.

Have you ever stopped and consider how few of the circumstances of life are really under our control.

We have no control over weather or over the traffic on the expressway or over the things people say and do to us.

Happiness depends on the right happening, but even when things go wrong, you can still have joy.

The person whose happiness depends on ideal circumstances is going to be miserable much of the time.

Do you know that the unusual thing about the letter is this, Paul’ situation was such that there appeared to be no reason for him to be rejoicing.

The secret of joy is founding another keyword that is often repeated in Philippians-

It is the word “mind”

Christian joy is found in the way the believer thinks-his attitudes.

Our filter to view our circumstances is our own attitude or our thinking.

Be careful how you think, your life is shaped by your thoughts.

Proverbs 23:7

2. People

All of us have lost our joy because of people:

What they are, what they say, and what they do.

And no doubt we ourselves have contributed to making somebody else unhappy.

But we have to live and work with people.

I for one, if I will be given a choice between working with people and working alone, I will choose working alone.

I can be alone for hours in my room working on something, I believe people sometimes causes delay.( but of course that is wrong)

We cannot isolate ourselves and still live to glorify Christ

We are a church, we need one another.

The church is all about people.

Do you know that people are people and they are human?(joke)

Matthew 5:14

"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden.

This church will not grow without people.

We need to handle people with care.

3. Things.

Luke 12:15

Then he said to them, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions."

I believe that God wants us to be blessed materially.

Our blessing is holistic: Spirit, Soul and Body…so this includes everything.

But Jesus gave us a warning. “Be on your guard against all kinds of greed”


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