The Joy of Faith
Despite sinners’ sinfulness, the Heavenly Father loves all. He is merciful, caring and loving. He pardons our sins and wants us to remain His people in all circumstances.
It is normal and natural when the awareness of God’s love brings joy because His dwelling place is abundant with it.
“Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and joy in his dwelling place.” (1Ch 16:27)
In the Bible the word “joy” occurs many times, meaning an emotional state arising from a sense of well-being because of the believer's unity with the Lord. It cannot but be personal and also can be shared by the members of a congregation or a religious community. That is, this emotional state is both personal and communal. Here are a few of such verses:
“The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes.” (Psa 19:8) “You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.” (Psa 30:11) “He brought out his people with rejoicing, his chosen ones with shouts of joy.” (Psa 105:43) “Light is shed upon the righteous and joy on the upright in heart.” (Psa 97:11) “The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.” (Psa 126:3) “The prospect of the righteous is joy, but the hopes of the wicked come to nothing.” (Pro 10:28)
It often happens that the faithful rejoice, but the wicked are sad or in tears. And when the wicked shed tears, those are tears of pain mixed with envy and hatred.
Every day the mass media report heartbreaking stories from around the world with the aim to arouse a negative reaction. Some of those stories can be called outrageous. However, those who sincerely believe in God and trust the Bible more than the mass media know that everything that happens is for good because it was planned by the Doer. The Doer always knows what He does. Therefore, there is no need to worry.
Feelings and emotions are personal. Negative feelings in the first place have to do not so much with the world as with the people who feel them and may indicate that God is angry. In that case something must be done in order for the situation to be changed.
One may ask what is the problem with us Christians? Have not been all Christians saved by the Savior? Are not we spiritually pure because of being God's children?
Well, we are God's children, but the problem is that we are disobedient children. All are sinful. Hypocrisy, sloth, greed, hatred, lust, envy as well as other sins – all human beings are vulnerable to them, all, with no exception, are affected by them. As a result, the devil, undermining the believers’ faith, often steals their joy.
Or let me tell of my own example. I cannot be sure for others, it is my personal experience that I can tell about. Several days ago I had a fit of dysphoria. I suppose everybody experiences something like that from time to time. I felt tired and empty. I thought about it and analyzed my feelings in order to find a means to restore my psychological energy.
Then I said to myself, “What is it? Is not it true that the Heavenly Father loves me? Well, God the Father loves me.” And immediately my soul was filled with great joy. It was like a revelation. It was great. It was wonderful.
Knowing that the Father loves me, I feel happy. That God loves me is the most wonderful thing I have ever learned. True happiness can be achieved in no way, except through faith in God. There is no alternative way to achieve that state.
It is also remarkable how the face of a person can tell about the state of her soul. Those who teach others often try to be in a good mood, but if they look like broken men, this indicates that something is wrong with their relationship with the Savior.
Faith in God is the best remedy and highly recommendable to those who feel depressed. The common psychiatric methods often do not help. A sinner can learn how to smile in front of the mirror or take tranquillizers to ease pain in her soul, but the result can be even worse.
Faith in Jesus Christ removes all problems. Faith in the Lord is healing in that it frees the soul from all irritants and troubles that cause psychological problems. Jesus Christ the Healer and Savior heals all pains and diseases and fills the souls of Christians with joy.
Those who believe in Christ are sure to enter the Kingdom of God, and their sureness of the glorious future also guarantees for them the constant and stable source of joy and happiness.
Moreover, the awareness of God’s love is the source of joy for people all over the world. No one is alone. Wherever you are, you are not alone, being a member of the universal Christian Church in which all are sharing in the joy of being one with Jesus Christ.
God gives joy as a sign of his love. It indicates not only that everything will be good in this world, but, what is more important, that everything will be good in the world to come.
Let us rejoice and be happy because the Heavenly Father loves us. Let us remember always about His love. We are not alone in the world. A good thing to do is to prove this by sharing your gift of faith with others.