7 Layered Joy

“These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.”  John 15:11  NKJV


Photo: Renae Bowman

Photo: Renae Bowman

It happened the other day and I couldn’t get it out of my head. In fact, it’s still there buzzing around. It’s one of those songs that gets stuck between your ears and won’t let go.   If you don’t want it stuck in your head—I suggest you stop reading right now, because once it starts, it doesn’t stop. Trust me!

So here goes:

I’ve got that joy, joy, joy, joy

down in my heart,

down in my heart,

down in my heart.

I’ve got that joy, joy, joy, joy

down in my heart,

down in my heart to stay!

(click here for a fun rendition to listen to)

I dare you to not sing that again for the rest of the day!

Joy. It’s that “thing” that seems so elusive to many but abundant to some.

Jesus Christ is the abundant Joy.   Short and simple.   Try having joy without a center-filled faith.

I’m not talking happiness—because happiness is fleeting. It comes and goes as easily as the wind. Don’t believe me?…try walking into Costco happy and then discover it’s sample day—your happiness will be gone in a second! Carts everywhere, people clambering for one bite, one bite mind you, of cheese—of cheese! That would send anyone’s happiness reeling.

But beyond that:

Life happens.

Sadness comes.

Frustration comes.

Trials come.

Almost daily. Sometimes minute by minute.

But, what is at the core matters. It’s what’s at the bottom that sustains us. Like a 7-layer bean dip on football Sunday, there is plenty rising up but the best stuff is on the bottom. The heart of the dish, the substance that supports the rest, is what makes it all come together.

Joy is that substance.

Joy is what should be at the bottom of our hearts…the bottom of our souls.

It’s what everything else is built on.

Because even if every layer above gets pushed aside, the matter of the heart remains.

Christ our Savior gave us the gift of joy.

Our key verse show us—He has it, He wants us to have it, He says if we want more of it then He is the source. (John 15:11)

Sometimes things get tough though, don’t they? It seems like joy is nowhere to be found. But truly, it is right in front of us. It can be found! Even when happiness is gone, just a glimmer of joy can make all the difference.

And you may be at that point right now. Times may be bad, things may be difficult, it may be the worse event ever in your life, but you have a choice to yell at the enemy and say, “You will NOT steal my joy! I may not be happy, I may be angry, I may have fear but whatever I’m going through, whatever I will face, whatever obstacles are in my way…my joy will remain! My joy is in Christ Jesus…and THAT you cannot take away!!”

Jesus Christ is the only source of that Joy. No other ‘god’ the world talks about, no money, no possession, no position, no person, no relationship—nothing—can give you joy. All those and more will give you temporary happiness, but if you want joy—true, sustained joy, you must look to the Source. You must look to a Savior.

So let me ask, is joy elusive to you? Do you want that peace beyond understanding? Do you want that deep down commodity, which the song talks about?

Then surrender.

Then ask for it.

Then open your heart to the One that will give and let Him pour it right on in. Trust me—you will wonder how you lived without it before. Even in your worst of days, there will still be a joy that you won’t be able to explain away. It will come out of nowhere and become that lifeline that you hold on to. And somewhere a peace follows.

May I suggest our hymn of joy be stuck in our heads for a long while? Go ahead, sing it a few more times and let it sink in. Maybe if something as simple as an old-time hymn can spin its way into our hearts, we can let the meaning take over. Let it go down into your heart, down into your heart, down into your heart…to stay.




2 Replies

  1. Lori perez

    That was wonderful. I am sure I will be singing that song foe awhile but that is definitely a song to enjoy singing. It may even help when things don’t feel right.

    1. Yep! Exactly…if we would sing that a little more often when things aren’t “good” we might see changes in our hearts we so desperately need. Thank you for stopping by and chatting!

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