Don’t Let The Joy Thieves Creep In
Have you ever noticed that there are some people whose life/world outlook, despite their circumstances, is always dour, negative and critical, especially of anything that brings joy to others? They are the ones eager to complain about how bad things are and in their eyes things are only going to get worse.
They question everyone’s motive for engaging in any act of kindness and they think everyone is as selfish and self-centered as they are. They are the epitome of Scrooge and worse than Scrooge before his conversion .
These are the most aggressive joy stealers, the critics, cynics, pessimists, complainers, faultfinders, the divisive, the gossips, the false witnesses, the schemers, the arrogant, the proud, the self-seeking and self-centered, the unthankful, the liars, the thieves, the unlovely, unforgiving, the quarrelsome, the timid and unbelieving.
Whenever and wherever possible you and I are admonished to avoid such people because they will trouble your soul [Jude 5-15] and, if you let them, cause you to miss out on much of the Life that Jesus came to give us all in abundance.
JOY is a big part of the abundant life, and Jesus wants us to have full joy in all things. Read and consider these Words of abundantly life.
“And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.” Luke 2:10
“These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you.” John 15:11-12
“Verily, verily, I say unto you, that ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.” John 16:20
“Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” John 16:24
“And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.” John 17:13
“But they shook off the dust of their feet against them, and came unto Iconium. And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.” Acts 13:51-52
“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” Romans 14:17
“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope…” Romans 15:13
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
“And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.” 1 John 1:4
For us who know the joy of the Lord through salvation in Jesus Christ we have a great opportunity every year at this time to join with the body of Christ worldwide to shower Jesus with love and adoration, with thanksgiving and worship, with celebrations, with music with gatherings of friends and family to remember the profound gift of His life to all mankind to redeem us from death, hell, and the grave and to rejoice in His victory!
This is a time for joy, for great joy, for going beyond the limit of just enough or “the least I can do.” It’s time to pour extravagant praise on our Lord.
The woman with the Alabaster box of costly perfume was not ashamed to lavish it on Jesus, anointing His head and His feet, filling the whole room where He was with the fragrance. We, likewise, have the opportunity now to fill every corner of our lives with lavish expressions of our love for our Savior and our Lord.
Don’t let some naysayer convince you that your resources are too inadequate to celebrate this year. Resist that liar and look unto Jesus the author and finisher of your faith and ask God how you can, with whatever you have, pour your love and appreciation on Him and then join with others wherever and whenever you can to share in the celebrations.
I like the summons in the Christmas carol, “People Look East” that says,
“Make your house fair as you are able,
trim the hearth and set the table.
People look east and sing today.
Love the Guest, [the Rose, the Star, the Lord] is on the way.”
Words: Eleanor Farjeon Music: Traditional French Carol