educate equip enable
Depression is one of the greatest problems in the world today. It is a crippling disease that can make it very difficult for some people to function and even brings some to the point of suicide.
Fortunately, God has a solution - joy. Joy is the opposite of depression and is part of God's equipping for every believer.
John 15:10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. (11) These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.
Joy is not happiness which is dependent on natural circumstances; joy comes from being obedient to Christ's commandments.
John 16:24 Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full.
Joy comes as we see our prayers answered.
Acts 20:24 But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
Paul did not count his own life as dear to himself, the reason being that he wanted to complete his race with joy.
The key to a joy-filled life is to live a life that is sold out to God, holding nothing back.
Rom 15:13 Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
1 Pet 1:8 whom having not seen you love. Though now you do not see Him, yet believing, you rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory,
Joy is the result of having a faith that does not depend on what it sees.
Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
Joy is a part of the fruit of the Spirit.
The fruit of the Spirit can only be developed if a person's life is yielded to Him.
2 Cor 8:1-2 Moreover, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia: (2) that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality.
Real joy is not dependent on our circumstances but comes through the outpouring of the grace of God.
James 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials,
1 Pet 4:13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ's sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.
Joy is also a decision we have to make as we make choices to rejoice even when our natural circumstances are very difficult.
This is not easy to do, but God never tells us to do anything that He does not give us the power to do.
Neh 8:10) Then he said to them, "Go your way, eat the fat, drink the sweet, and send portions to those for whom nothing is prepared; for this day is holy to our LORD. Do not sorrow, for the joy of the LORD is your strength."
The joy of the Lord is the secret of the believer's strength.
If the enemy can undermine a person's joy, he will have them in a place of weakness where he can take advantage.
If you like these Topical Bible Studies, don't forget to check out our Expository Bible Studies too.