Heart Smiling!     11-25-18
Bottom Line: The joy of the Lord is something the world can’t understand.
Introduction:
A. The farmer’s son returning from the market…
1. With a crate of chickens his father entrusted to him
2. Box fell & broke open, chickens scattered
3. “I managed to find all twelve of them!”
4. “Good job, son,” he beamed. “You left with seven.”
B. It’s fun to laugh, but it’s more fun to have joy in our hearts!
1. It can bring a smile or sometimes a tear.
2. Joy comes from thinking not just reacting!
* Sitting around the table talking w/ chaos going on!
C. One of the most challenging verses and commands in the Bible is found in 1 Thessalonians 5:16.
1. “Be joyful always” “Rejoice always” “Be cheerful no matter what” (MSG)
2. They needed it! Like the Philippians in 4:4
D. What is it and where does it come from?
1. “…feelings of great pleasure and happiness”
2. “The emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune, or by the prospect of possessing what one desires – delight”
* state of happiness – bliss – gaiety
E. That is why it’s a flame builder!
1. It’s not just happiness = happenings
2. The world can’t “get it”. Unlike anything else!
1. Joy is a weird paradox!
A. We can have joy in spite of problems! Mat.5:10-12
1. The Apostles – Acts 5:41 glade to suffer
2. Thessalonians in 1 Thess.1:6
B. Joy in Christ changes how we choose to see…
* 2 Cor.6:3-10; *2 Cor.12:10
C. We can see beyond the present hardship or trial
* James 1:2ff * 1 Cor.15 death swallowed in victory
2. Joy is not a feeling but an understanding!
A. Of God’s love for us, Jn.3:16; 1 Jn3:1
B. Of God’s grace given to us, Romans 5
C. Off Jesus’ sacrifice for us, 1 John 5:1-5
3. Joy is a transformative element in becoming like Jesus!
A. Becoming like Him is our life! Phil.1:21
B. Becoming like Him is a process! 2 Cor.3:18
C. Joy is a reflection of God’s love in our hearts!
4. Joy is a choice, a light, and a gift to others!
A. We choose joy in spite of circumstances & conditions
B. Joy is reflecting the light of Jesus to others! Mt.5:14-16
* Paul in 1 Thess.3:9
C. Like love, joy is nothing unless you give it away!
Conclusion:
A. Ever have everything go wrong?
* Plans, travel, events, etc.
B. Paul & Silas were in Philippi (Acts 16) Things started great w/ Lydia & household baptized – then the slave girl w/ the spirit of prophesy was healed – arrest & prison
* inner cell, stocks, midnight – depressing!
* Praying & singing hymns – others listening
* Earthquake, doors, chains, jailer…
C. What prison are you in right now? Sing & pray w/ joy!