through His Word
Groans could be heard throughout the airplane as it bounced and dipped. Turbulence. It was going to be a long flight. Each jerk of the aircraft caused a new round of complaints from its passengers with one exception. From seat 27D could be heard squeals of delight. A small, blue-eyed, blond-headed mite of a girl cheered with joyous abandon. To her, this flight was more than she could hope for. Her “sit in your seat and just be quiet” ride had turned into an exhilarating experience. I couldn’t help but smile at her happiness. In the midst of a less than satisfactory situation, this little one had found great pleasure.
The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness,
goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Against such things there is no law.
Galatians 5:22-23 NET
Greek: chara (khar-ah’)
Meaning: Cheerfulness, Calm delight1
Joy’s very definition can make us smile. The idea of being full of cheer lightens our mood. But there is one more definition we should consider. Delight means an extreme level of satisfaction,2 and satisfaction means “a source or means of enjoyment”3: Contentment.
Ahhh. . . Who knew that joy bubbles up from satisfaction, and is quickly followed by contentment. Out of the list of attributes of the Spirit found in Galatians 5, joy is the one that shouts out “This is pretty great!” If this were fruit we were eating, joy would be the part that would make us want to take another bite, savoring every bit of its lip-smacking goodness.
Joy is the optimist, bringing with it the knowing that hope is still alive. Joy is the spark of a smile mingled with tears as we remember God is near and He has a plan. Joy is the light that brings new perspective.
So when you feel joy slipping away, just think of little Miss 27D and her infectious giggles. No matter what you are facing, God is in it with you and that is cause for celebration.
“A cheerful heart brings good healing.”
Proverbs 17:22 NET
© Copyright 2016 by Patty Schell
Patty Schell is a writer/blogger who loves to put words together that challenge others to take a fresh look at how Scripture it plays into their daily lives. Learn more about Patty at Girl on Adventure at girlonadventure.com.
This article first appeared in Refresh Bible Study Magazine.
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