The Difference between Happiness and Joy

I like being Happy. I am thankful that even in our U.S. constitution, it mentions the pursuit of happiness. I am glad we can pursue it, even though we are not always able to attain it. Happiness is based on Happenings or specific pleasant experiences, like a beautiful sunset or a great vacation etc…They make us smile and create good memories to reflect back on. That being said, they are temporary and quickly evaporate. You may have seen this happen as you return from a fun trip or vacation. A few days later, you are back at work or busy with your regular routine and responsibilities, and the euphoria of happiness fades into “the real world” stuff we all have to cope with again. You wish you could go back to and relive that happy time you had last week.

Our joy in the Lord, is not limited to just good days or experiences and is available 24/7 and has no expiration date. It is not based on our surroundings or feelings but rather upon our personal relationship with God.

We can be joyful even when when we are not happy with our present circumstances.Our joy is not limited to our current situation. The Joy that comes from knowing God is with you and me, transcends any situation we may encounter. Just realizing that God is with us and goes ahead of us gives us greater comfort and stability. Dr. Henri J. M. Nouwen has stated: “Joy does not simply happen to us. We have to choose Joy and keep choosing it every day.”

I like to think of JOY this way:

Jesus

Only

You

Jesus Only You can: Forgive me of my shortcomings and faults. Give me Eternal Life. Give me the Strength I need for today. Only You know me better than anyone and knows what is best for me right now…Jesus Only You!

Here are some practical and specific verses form the Bible about Joy:

“Restore to me the Joy of your salvation and uphold me by your righteous right hand.” – Psalm 51: 12

“You will show me the path of life, in Your Presence is fulness of Joy.” – Psalm 16:11

“The Joy of the Lord is your strength.” – Nehemiah 8:10

“I will Rejoice in the Lord, I will be Joyful in God my Savior.” – Habakkuk 3:18

“The Lord’s instruction is right, giving Joy to the Heart.” -Psalm 19:8

“ Always be Joyful.” -I Thessalonians 5:16

May you and I choose the Joy that we only can find in Jesus…today and everyday.

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