Tag Archive for joy

We Choose Joy

You don’t have to wait for joy to happen.
You can choose it by
turning to God,
trusting Him, and
rejoicing in all He is.

Printed Music 

We choose joy,
We choose faith,
We choose love
No matter what the challenge.
We choose peace.
We choose patience.
We are strong in Jesus Christ.

In our pain,
In our need,
In our grief,
When all around is shadow,
We choose hope.
We choose courage.
We are strong in Jesus Christ.


by Ken Bible, © 2004, 2007 LNWhymns.com

For the Joy

Since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 

For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. (Hebrews 12:1-3, NASB)

Jesus endured unimaginable suffering
physically, emotionally, and spiritually,
not out of obligation,
but “for the joy set before Him” (v.2).

The scripture emphasizes Jesus’ complete humiliation before His enemies
every step of the way.
Crucifixion itself was designed for humiliation, and
the place of crucifixion was chosen for maximum public visibility.
The Jewish leaders, the most “holy” and respectable men of their day,
mocked and ridiculed Him even as He was in the grip of searing pain.

Yet Jesus endured all this “for the joy set before Him”.
He “despised the shame” (v.2).
That means He dismissed all that shame, that humiliation,
as unworthy of consideration.
He faced His trial “for the joy set before Him”.

Remember what Jesus was longing to share with His disciples
only hours before His suffering?

“These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy made be made full.” (John 15:11, NASB)

All who love and trust Jesus share His remarkable joy.
Our Father graciously gives each believer a precious gift:
He allows us a small share in Christ’s joyful sufferings.
He calls us to give ourselves, to sacrifice ourselves for others.

As I look at the sacrifices that have come into my life –
sacrifices for my wife, my children, and my grandchildren,
for the ministry God has given me –
I find that for the most part, I make those sacrifices,
not out of obligation,
not for glory or gold,
but out of love…out of joy.
I joyfully sacrifice out of
love for my family and friends,
love for my Father, and
love for the beautiful truth He has revealed to me.
Love brings joy, and
I find great joy in helping those I love.
I love God, and
I find great joy in glorifying Him –
in helping people see how great and good and ever-present He is.

Father, give me the heart of Christ.
Fill my life, my service, my every daily activity
with His joyful self-giving.
Help me to live and love and labor every day
for the joy.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: For the Joy
Printed Music & Lyrics

Rejoice in Jesus Christ!

from the book, ONE WITH OUR FATHER 

John 15:11

“These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.” (John 15:11, NASB)

Jesus has just painted a beautiful picture of our life in Him.
We are like a branch connected to the Vine.
We are fruitful as we remain in Him.
Our prayers are answered as we remain in Him.

Why has He told us all this?
What was on His heart?

Jesus longs for us to share the joy He finds in His Father, in
loving His Father,
trusting His Father, and
obeying His Father.
He wants us to know His joy, and
He wants our joy to be full!

How is joy different than happiness?
Normally we connect happiness
with temporary circumstances.
We are happy because
we are on vacation, or
our relationships are going smoothly, or
our health is good, or
we feel financially comfortable.

But we are joyful because of what doesn’t change:
Who Jesus is,
Who He is to us every day,
our relationship with Him, and
our future in Him.

Jesus wants us to rejoice because of
what is always ours in Him.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Joy in Christ
Printed Music & Lyrics

Unchanging Joy

Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8:10, NASB)

I wrote the hymn below out of deep grief. On February 20, 2015, our 38-year-old son, David, took his own life. It was totally unexpected, and we were overwhelmed with a sorrow we had never experienced.

As the months passed and the grief still shrouded our souls, I tried my normal way of processing thoughts and feelings: I attempted to write about my grief. But when I did, the river of sorrow within me overflowed and engulfed me. Writing about my grief only made it worse.

Eventually I began to realize that God was calling me to focus, not on grief, but on joy. He was teaching me to live in joy, even when flooded with deepest sorrow. He prodded me to write about and sing about the joy that is always mine in Christ. Situations change, often beyond our control. But Jesus Christ does not change. Who He is in us and who we are in Him is right now our bright, eternal, all-encompassing reality. Christ is our unchanging joy, springing up forever, refreshing us whenever we obey the Bible’s urgent reminder to “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4, NASB)

When Jesus was in the darkest hours of His life, facing trial, torture, and execution, He spoke to His disciples about His fullness of joy. He longed to share with them His deep joy in the midst of sorrow.

“These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full.” (John 15:11, NASB) 

During my time of grief, our loving Father is teaching me to drink deeply of Jesus Christ, my always and forever fountain of joy. This hymn was written primarily for myself, as a way to daily rejoice in Christ. I gladly share it with you.

Listen and sing:
Hymn: Christ My Joy
Printed Music & Lyrics