“3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to His abundant Mercy has begotten us again unto a lively hope by the Resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
4 To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fades not away, reserved in Heaven for you,
5 Who are kept by the power of God through faith unto Salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
6 Wherein you greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, you are in heaviness through manifold temptations:
7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perishes, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
8 Whom having not seen, you love; in Whom, though now you see Him not, yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:
9 Receiving the end of your faith, even the Salvation of your souls.” 1 Peter 1:3-9
Joy and happiness are not the same. Happiness is external. It is affected by external circumstances. The world experiences happiness.
Actually, on a side note, the “happiness” witnessed at the secular music concerts is the same “happiness” felt at the modern “Christian” concerts. Just as in days of old, many profess Christianity but their hearts are far from God.
Joy however is internal. It is a Fruit of the Spirit that the world cannot possess. There is no law that can produce joy. It is unspeakable. It is the ministry of the Holy Spirit to superintend the work of God in our heart and lives but we only give Him the latitude to do so when our faith is placed solely and exclusively in the Cross of Christ. The Holy Spirit will never point to Himself but always to Who Jesus is and what HE has done for whosoever will believe. He (the Holy Spirit) will reveal to the Born Again Believer Jesus Christ and it is upon that revelation that the Church is built.
“15 He (Jesus) said unto them, But whom say you that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed are you, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it unto you, but My Father which is in Heaven.
18 And I say also unto you, That you are Peter, and upon this rock (the revelation of Who Jesus is) I will build My Church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” Matthew 16:15-18
As the Holy Spirit witnesses to our spirit that we are a Child of God, we rejoice with joy unspeakable. The trials and tribulations of our faith are found unto praise and honor even though we see Him not in the present moment, yet we know in Whom we have believed and He is faithful and true to work all things for our good according to His Will and His Ways and not our own. We are sold out; bought with a price. We can’t help but rejoice with a joy unspeakable no matter the circumstances. The trial that we’re going through will bring us closer to the Lord and is not meant for our harm. His Arm is not shortened. His strength is manifest in our weakness…not our willpower.
The Lord is near. Rejoice.
-Donna Clark Warren