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By Mary Craig
Joy is an emotion. It rises within the core of our being when we receive something we value greatly and when we give something we value greatly. Joy can come to us regardless of our circumstances, even in spite of our circumstances when our hope, our expectation, is in God.
God is love, and it is Loveís joy to give. God gave to the cosmos, to His creation, His most treasured, most valued, unique Son because it gave Him great pleasure, the utmost delight, to do.
For God so loved the world (cosmos) that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Jesus Christ, Godís Incarnate Son, came from heaven willingly. With His heart full of joy, He lived daily obeying the will of His Father, even dying the death that sin, our sin, required. (Philippians 2, Hebrews 12.1, 2) The Holy Spirit, who conceived Jesus, had so much pleasure, so much delight, in Jesus that the bond of love could not be broken, even with Jesusí death. That love, that joy, brought dominion over death and generated the power, the energy that raised Jesus from the dead. (Romans 8.1-11)
Jesus is alive, living in an unbreakable bond of love emoting fullness of joy. (Psalm 16) We are called to enter into the joy of our Lord (Matthew 25.21). We are commanded to rejoice in the Lord (Psalm 33.1, Psalm 68.3, Romans 12.15, Philippians 4.4, 1 Thessalonians 5.16, e.g.) We have been commissioned to take the message of reconciliation with the Creator God, to take the message of peace and righteousness through the Blood of Jesus, to the world to whom the Father sent the Son. (2 Corinthians 5.18-21)
With the glory of the Lord shining all around them so that they feared in the face of this awesome spectacle, some shepherds encountered an angel of the Lord, saying to them:
Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the LordÖ(Luke 2.10, 11)
Good tidings. Great joy. A Savior has come. Christ the Lord. At this good news our hearts are to be filled with great joy. This joy is promised to us. It is the emotion of the celebration of life, the emotion of intense satisfaction, delight, gladness, pleasure, merriment, cheerfulness. Our redemption comes, indeed today it has come, and we are to rejoice.
Godís delight in Jesus and those abiding in Jesus spills over into our spirits, penetrating our souls, permeating our bodies until the love of the Spirit shed abroad in our hearts brings us to the reality of Zephaniah 3.14-17:
Sing, O daughter of Zion! Shout, O Israel! Be glad and rejoice with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem! The Lord has taken away your judgments. He has cast out your enemy. The King of Israel, the Lord, is in your midst.You shall see disaster no more. In that day it shall be said to Jerusalem: ĎDo not fear; Zion, let not your hands be weak. The Lord your God in your midst, the Mighty Hero who Saves; He will; rejoice over you with gladness. He will be quiet in His love. He will rejoice over you with singing.í
Now I know the other sideódespair, depression, demonic oppression. I have been there, done that, put the T-shirts in the drawer. I have "soap opera" days in my history, but God has given me a revelation of the anointing of dominion, and it is joy. We were created to glorify God by enjoying Him forever. And we can enjoy God by looking in the right direction, in the proper place, to Godís appointed end.
Rejoice! Be joyful. Celebrate the coming of the Savior, your Savior, my Savior, and let there be joy to the world!
© 2000 Mary Craig Ministries, Inc.
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