Joy Really Is a Choice

by | Oct 3, 2013 | Woman

I just wrote a check for my son to take voice lessons. He plays electric, acoustic and bass guitar, and he is working toward being a music leader at church in the future. He’s well on his way, and I can hardly wait to see the progress he makes with his voice coach this year.
 
Paul lets the Corinthian believers know he is their coach: “We work with you for your joy” (2 Cor. 1:24, NIV). Paul’s the one who sang worship songs from prison, so he’s an expert in the field of practicing joy in the most painful, dark, hopeless places.
 
Paul coached me.
 
Four years ago this month, my husband, Matt, came home from Uganda and had a severe reaction to his malaria medication. I cried myself to sleep for the first eight months of his horrible illness. Now Matt is much better, although symptoms still come in and out like the tide.
 
Paul instructed me to rejoice in the Lord: “I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Phil. 4:4).
 
I was a good student, and I did rejoice. It was hard.
 
Joy is something we choose to sign up for and practice. Rejoicing in the Lord is something we can be coached in and get better at. 
 
My son, who has been singing baritone in choir for two years, came home and told us his voice coach thinks he is really a tenor. “My song goes all the way up to an E,” he said.
Matt said, “You can do it, son. She’ll work with you until you can sing that high.”
 
“Work,” Paul says to the Corinthians. “I will work with you for your joy.” Work it is. Complaining and depression and hopelessness are much, much easier to reach. They’re the low, comfortable notes of the song.
 
Rejoicing will stretch you higher than you think you can reach.
 
Consider what an incredible relationship we have entered into with the Lord that one of his greatest concerns is teaching us to enjoy Him. What kindness. We are made for a magnificent joy, and to hope for this is the first lesson.
 
Christy Fitzwater is the author of A Study of Psalm 25: Seven Actions to Take When Life Gets Hard. She is a blogger, pastor’s wife and mom of two teenagers and resides in Montana. Visit ChristyFitzwater.com for more information about her ministry. 

CHARISMA NEWSLETTERS

Stay up-to-date with current issues, Christian teachings, entertainment news, videos & more.

The latest breaking Christian news you need to know about as soon as it happens.

Prophetic messages from respected leaders & news of how God is moving throughout the world. 


MORE FROM CHARISMA

The Biblical Way to Rise Above Mediocre Expectations

The Biblical Way to Rise Above Mediocre Expectations

We spend a lot of life figuring out if we “measure up,” a phrase someone coined in the mid-1800s. Even in childhood, we begin comparing ourselves with siblings and kids at school, and it never seems to stop. The problem goes back to Cain and Abel, doesn’t it? Most of...

A Better Way to Witness to Others for Christ

A Better Way to Witness to Others for Christ

”Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?” (Rom. 2:4). Looking retrospectively at my past as an atheist, I can see where God...

Why Does God Want Us to Speak with Tongues?

Why Does God Want Us to Speak with Tongues?

Why speak with tongues? There are many reasons for speaking in a spiritual language. Primarily, though, the Scriptures require it. The apostle Paul commanded us, saying, “Pray in the Spirit always” (Eph. 6:18). Jude commanded it in verse 20, saying, “Pray in the Holy...

Why God’s Rebuilding is Better Than His Restoration

Why God’s Rebuilding is Better Than His Restoration

Often, I have prayed for the Lord to restore something in my life. Whenever I have gone through a hard season or a broken relationship, my prayers automatically petition the Lord to restore my situation. Whenever there is a loss, and you are going through the grieving...

Why America Must Adopt the Battle Cry of Isaiah

Why America Must Adopt the Battle Cry of Isaiah

A battle cry is used to summon armies to war. A loud, unified shout could intimidate the strongest of enemies. Confidence in battle often tilts the scale toward victory, whereas timidity, fear and cowardliness will surely lead to defeat. In these dreadful times, don’t...

RECENT ARTICLES

Intentionally Raising a Godly Generation

Debbie put her faith in Christ at age 11. In fact, her whole family met Jesus at just about the same time. As her parents began growing in their faith, they nurtured growth in their children as...
Dream Big: How to Cultivate Divine Revelation While You Sleep

Dream Big: How to Cultivate Divine Revelation While You Sleep

Do you have any dreams from God that you have allowed to fall by the wayside? For some of you, it’s time to dream again. For some of you, it’s time to dust off your previous dreams. For some of you, it’s important to realize God is not late; He’s always on time. For...

Prophecy: God Is Bringing About Swift Turnarounds

Prophecy: God Is Bringing About Swift Turnarounds

In the month of August, God is bringing swift turnarounds so that your hard places will become a wide-open field. God is bringing about divine connections in order to strengthen the body of Christ. He is releasing faith for radical generosity, divine strategy to...

End-Times Truth: The Rapture Reveals a Split Church

End-Times Truth: The Rapture Reveals a Split Church

There are several resurrections and raptures in the Bible. I cannot understand those who argue that because there is no mention of the word "rapture" in the Bible they do not believe in it. They only believe in the Second Coming of the Lord. Some arguments are no...

The Supernatural Secrets of Real Revival

The Supernatural Secrets of Real Revival

What does an authentic world-igniting revival look like? And, how are the seeds of revival planted? This we can learn from the life and work of William Joseph Seymour—God’s chosen vessel and apostle of the Azusa Street Revival.  Bishop William Joseph Seymour, was a...

Pin It on Pinterest

[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]
[class^="wpforms-"]