Joy: Our Commanded Blessing

1 Thessalonians 5:16 TPT says, “Let joy be your continual feast.”

1 Peter 1:8-9 TPT say, “…through believing in him you are saturated with an ecstatic joy, indescribably sublime and immersed in glory. For you are reaping the harvest of your faith—the full salvation promised you—your souls’ victory!”

According to the Tyndale Bible Dictionary, there are two distinct types of joy: One is a feeling, which is not commanded. The other is an action, which is commanded.

In regards to joy being a feeling, this dictionary says, “Joy is a feeling called forth by well-being, success, or good fortune. A person automatically experiences it because of certain favorable circumstances. It cannot be commanded” (Ps 137:1-6).

In regards to joy being an action, this same dictionary says, “There is a joy that Scripture commands. That joy is action that can be engaged in regardless of how the person feels. Joy in adverse circumstances is possible only as a fruit of the Holy Spirit, who is present in every Christian” (Mt 5:11-12, Phil 4:4, 1 Thes 5:16, Jas 1:2).

Galatians 5:22 TPT affirms this by saying, “But the fruit produced by the Holy Spirit within you is divine love in all its varied expressions: joy that overflows, peace that subdues, patience that endures, kindness in action, a life full of virtue, faith that prevails, gentleness of heart, and strength of spirit. Never set the law above these qualities, for they are meant to be limitless.”

Limitless, overflowing joy, like all the fruit of the Spirit, is an expression of the love and victory we have in Christ (Ps 21:1).

Romans 5:11 TPT says, “…we overflow with triumphant joy in our new relationship of living reconciled to God—all because of Jesus Christ!”

So this divine victory, expressed as joy, is what we have inside of us—sealed in our spirit as believers. And, it can overflow as we rejoice in The Lord, regardless of circumstance.

God greatly honors our intentional choice to rejoice in Him, despite enemy resistance.

Romans 5:2 says, “…as we keep on celebrating our hope of experiencing God’s glory,” “incredible joy bursts forth within us.”

Proverbs 28:12 TPT tells us, “The triumphant joy of God’s lovers releases great glory…”

Rejoicing in The Lord honors God, which invites Him to pour out His Spirit, not only through us like a fountain, but also upon us from Heaven above.

I have experienced this many times during praise and worship sessions, especially when my heart’s cry has been desperate.

There’s nothing more overwhelmingly satisfying, joyful and powerful than the tangible, glorious Presence of Almighty God, where all of His fruit is expressed as love.

Psalm 84:10 TPT says, “For just one day of intimacy with you is like a thousand days of joy rolled into one!…”

If you’ve never experienced this level of intimate joy, I invite you to try:

Get alone.

Play some worship music.

Worship God for an hour, focusing entirely on Him.

Then, see what happens.

A breaking through of enemy resistance into a heavenly realm occurs.

In God’s Glory-Presence, even more breakthrough occurs (Ps 35:9, 51:12, 145:7)!

Peace, revelation and healing occurs as the power of God is released.

So, if you need a lift from whatever is weighing you down, rejoice in The Lord.

Joy is our strength.

We know this from Nehemiah 8:10 AMPC, which commands us to, “…be not grieved and depressed, for the joy of the Lord is your strength and stronghold.”

Friends, we have a decision to make to remain on the side of victory by intentionally choosing to rejoice in The Lord with gladness, no matter what our circumstances or how we feel.

Romans 12:12 TPT encourages us to let our “hope burst forth within you, releasing a continual joy. Don’t give up in a time of trouble, but commune with God at all times.”

Joy is a mighty weapon—as an escape from enemy traps (Pr 29:6 TPT) and a protective covering that the enemy cannot enter into (Ps 5:11-12 TPT)!

Friends, we have so much to be joyful for, beginning with our salvation. God has seated us in powerful victory. He has the final Word over our circumstances when we trust and obey Him (Ps 28:7, 119:2, 14; Pr 8:32).

Psalm 119:56 TPT reveals, “All this joy is mine as I follow your ways!”

Friends, my prayer for you is this…

Lord, Thank You for revealing to us “the pathways to life” and for filling us with “euphoria” (Acts 2:28 TPT)!

“…Let them all be glad, those who turn aside to hide themselves in you. May they keep shouting for joy forever! Overshadow them in your presence as they sing and rejoice. Then every lover of your name will burst forth with endless joy. Lord, how wonderfully you bless the righteous. Your favor wraps around each one and covers them under your canopy of kindness and joy” (Ps 5:11-12 TPT)

Lord, May Your strength be our “song of joy. At each and every sunrise,” may the “lyrics of” Your “love fill the air!” May You become our “glory-fortress, a stronghold in” our “day of distress” (Ps 59:16 TPT).

Lord, May Your victory heap blessing after blessing upon us as we rejoice before Your face (Ps 21:6). And, may Your Words of wisdom bring us joy…for Kingdom purposes (Pr 8:34).

In Jesus’ Mighty Name.

Amen.

“Now may God, the inspiration and fountain of hope, fill you to overflowing with uncontainable joy and perfect peace as you trust in him. And may the power of the Holy Spirit continually surround your life with his super-abundance until you radiate with hope!” (Ro 15:13 TPT)!

“Go ahead–sing your brand-new song to the Lord! He is famous for his miracles and marvels, for he is victorious through his mighty power and holy strength” (Ps 98:1 TPT).

To God be the glory!

This video-devo was graciously re-posted by Salem Web Network, which includes iBelieve.com.

Crowned With Compassion: God’s Merciful & Mighty Move

Psalm 140:6 MSG reveals our desperate cry: “Listen, God! Mercy!”

And Psalm 138:3 TPT assures us that “At the very moment I called out to you, you answered me! You strengthened me deep within my soul and breathed fresh courage into me.”

Friends, our urgent voice can move God’s heart to extend mercy to us straightaway (Ps. 140:6 TPT).

In His mercy, God keeps reviving us by His might (Ps. 138:7).

God’s Word says, “He is so rich in compassion and mercy” (Eph. 2:4) and extends it according to His will (Rom. 9:15).

We know that the crossover to deeper compassion begins at the cross, the place of intersection where we exchange our limitations for His more beautiful betrothal.

Yes, God betroths us in compassion, which moves us toward faithfulness to His covenant (Hos. 2:19–20).

As His redeemed, we are seated and baptized in mercy. We are established in victory. After repentance, we are positioned to receive His best profitability, and we are re-launched (established). 

So, times of refreshing come after our repentance, after we turn away from our way and return to His (Acts 3:19-21). 

Consider the prodigal son (Lk. 11-32).

Upon his turn from the pig pen to home, His father was compassionate—deeply moved in His inward parts—to restore him to grace and truth. This story illustrates our Heavenly Father’s compassionate love for us, where He leans toward us (Eph. 2:8) and even runs to us.

As we run to God, He runs to us.

Luke 15:20 TPT says, “So the young son set off for home. From a long distance away, his father saw him coming, dressed as a beggar, and great compassion swelled up in his heart for his son who was returning home. So, the father raced out to meet him. He swept him up in his arms, hugged him dearly, and kissed him over and over with tender love.

In Psalm 69:16 TPT King David echoes this same precept by saying, “Oh, Lord God, answer my prayers! I need to see your tender kindness, your grace, your compassion, and your constant love. Just let me see your face, and turn your heart toward me. Come running quickly to your servant. In this deep distress, come and answer my prayer.” 

Friends, God literally “waits on high to have compassion on you” (Is. 30:18).

The moment we call out to Him, He answers.

God doesn’t leave us at dirty, guilty or ugly. He removes our sins. He redeems our “life from the pit and crowns” us “with love and compassion” (Ps. 103:4).

So, compassion is a crown.

God gives us beauty for the ashes we once endured, even if we caused them.

God is especially merciful toward the sins of our youth.

In Psalm 25:6, 11 TPT, King David prays, “Forgive my failures as a young man, and overlook the sins of my immaturity. Give me grace, Lord! Always look at me through your eyes of love—your forgiving eyes of mercy and compassion. When you think of me, see me as one you love and care for. How good you are to me! For the honor of your name, Lord, never count my sins, and forgive them all—lift their burden off of my life! Come closer to me now, Lord, for I need your mercy” (Ps. 25:16).

Matthew 11:28 TPT asks, “Are you weary, carrying a heavy burden? Then come to me. I will refresh your life, for I am your oasis.”

In His Presence, God lifts heavy burdens off of us, pours out His blessings upon us and strengthens our soul (Ps. 138:3). 

He transforms our lives as He brings us from darkness into His marvelous light.

Psalm 110:3 TPT assures us that “…in the brightness of your holy ones You will shine as an army rising from the womb of the dawn, anointed with the dew of your youth!”

This magnifies God and His Kingdom (Ps. 138:2).

Friends, God will fulfill the desires and dreams He put in us long ago, even ones we first knew were there in our teen years.

Psalm 126:4 TPT assures us, “Now, Lord, do it again! Restore us to our former glory! May streams of your refreshing flow over us until our dry hearts are drenched again.”

God knows just how to do it right. He remembers His promises and is faithful to fulfill them in His time and way. 

So, it’s important to seek God, forgive ourselves and others, and receive His times of refreshing. 

David intimately knew the life-restoration of God’s compassionate forgiveness.

Psalm 130:4 says, “But your forgiving love is what makes you so wonderful. No wonder you are loved and worshiped!”

David knew God’s compassion for his revival. He said, “By your mighty power I can walk through any devastation and you will keep me alive, reviving me…” (Ps. 138:7 TPT).

David knew God as His only hero-source for rescue, as the provider of the ransom price for God’s people (Ps. 25:15, 17, 21-22).

Jesus was filled with compassion at the sight of wandering sheep (Mk. 6:34). He was and is gentle to the ignorant (Heb. 5:2). He restrains wrath and shows mercy (Ps. 78:38). He is the balanced mediator, the light in the darkness who forgives sin when we repent (Titus 3:4-5). 

With Him, there is only ultimate victory.

There is no pain in His tangible Presence.

With Him, there is no victimhood in compassion, because He dissolves pain and restores us from a place of victory.

As the author and the finisher, God offers us a full, complete healing experience beyond the pain of sin, trials, and testing to higher ground. So, He included the elements of breakthrough and completion in His great and tender compassion. 

God desires to show us the pleasant part of John 10:10. The part that says, “I have come to give you everything in abundance, more than you expect—life in its fullness until you overflow!” This can only happen through faith in God, which pleases God.

Beloved, we can experience a fresh start, a new beginning that will lead to exponential blessings for us and beyond us as we continue to lean into our compassionate God and follow His lead.

Psalm 126:5-6 TPT assure us, “Those who sow their tears as seeds will reap a harvest with joyful shouts of glee. They may weep as they go out carrying their seed to sow, but they will return with joyful laughter and shouting with gladness as they bring back armloads of blessing and a harvest overflowing!”

Pray with me if you will…

Lord, “I bow down before your divine presence and bring you my deepest worship as I experience your tender love and your living truth. For the promises of your word and the fame of your name have been magnified above all else!” (Ps.138:2). “May my voice move your heart to show me mercy” (Ps. 140:6). 

I lay down every idol of unforgiveness toward myself and others. I choose to put Your way above my own. I invite You to rid me of any and all hindrances to Your great and tender mercy and compassion. If there is any wrongdoing in me that I need to repent of, please reveal it to me, so that times of refreshing may come to me. “Enrich my soul” in You, Lord, and “refresh my heart” in You (Ph.1:20). 

Thank You that Your “Light shines in the darkness for good people, for those who are merciful, kind, and just” (Ps. 112:4 GNT). Thank You that “At the very moment I called out to you, you answered me! You strengthened me deep within my soul and breathed fresh courage into me” (Ps. 138:3). 

Thank You for Your work of compassion in me that makes me useable for service in kindness without cruelty (Ps. 139:5). Thank You for clothing me in Your compassion so I can show mercy toward others, as You have shown it toward me (Col. 3:12, Lk. 6:36). Thank You for finishing the work You have begun in me (Ps. 138:8). Thank You for crowning me with Your compassion. 

Thank You for establishing (re-launching) me in greater blessings to be a blessing to Your Kingdom. In Jesus’ Mighty Name. Amen.

This video-devo was graciously re-posted by Salem Web Network, which includes iBelieve.com.