There was a young boy spending the summer with his grandfather on the farm. While walking around he noticed the chickens scratching and playing. The little boy said, "They ain't got it". Next he saw a calf in the field playing and he replied, "He ain't got it". After examining all of the animals on his grandfather's farm and realizing that none of them had "it", the boy finally found the old donkey in the barn. When he saw the donkey's long, frowning face and the posture that the donkey had, the little boy screamed for his grandfather to come quick. "I found it, I found it" the boy kept yelling. When his grandfather asked what he had found he said, "PawPaw, I found an animal that has the exact kind of religion that you have".
The attitude we demonstrate to others in our daily lives has an effect on how people perceive us as Christians. If all we give them is a sour uninviting expression on our face, what kind of religion are we advertising? Jesus isn't a long faced, depressed, shoulder drooping man. No one would be attracted to that. His attitude is inviting, warm and encouraging. Jesus is enthusiastic, dynamic, full of joy and charismatic.
An attitude of joy is an intentional decision followed by a process. We are not talking about happiness. Joy is inner delight derived from an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ. Happiness is circumstantial joy. No matter what circumstances life brings into our path, the inner joy is a result of our relationship with Christ. Joy will flood our souls. It is the peace that surpasses all understanding.
Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6.
Non-Christians cannot manufacture the attitude of Christ in their lives. It is impossible. Inner joy only comes from a solid relationship with Jesus. God wants Christians to reflect the joy of the Lord in their lives. People need to see that on our face. What kind of fruit are you producing today? Joy is good fruit. Good fruit is attractive and people desire lots of good fruit. Plastic and rotten fruit are not inviting.
The joy of the Lord is my strength today. What about you?
My prayer today is that God will fill my soul with JOY. I want to be a contagious Christian. I pray that God will display gratitude through my example. I want God's love to flow through me. I pray that God will continue to use me as an encourager for others.
I pray you have a wonderful and blessed Thursday and that your life will be filled to overflowing with the joy of the Lord!