There used to be a song that we would sing in youth group where one of the lines went like this. “I’ve got the JOY, JOY, JOY, JOY, JOY” of the Lord in my heart. While it is silly to look back on, the reality is that when we let the joy of the Lord shine through us, we can have an opportunity to make an eternal difference in the lives of others.

Recently, a former student’s mother, someone I respected very highly, passed away suddenly. This woman, Tammy, was one of the nicest, most joyful people I have ever encountered. And, the most amazing thing about it was that it was all because of her relationship with God. She met Jesus in your youth and that changed her life forever. Because of Jesus she had so much joy and she gave so much joy. The JOY of the Lord shined right through her.

As believers, we have the incomparable privilege of carrying the eternal joy of the Lord in us at all times. God’s desire is for all believers to be beacons of joy that illuminate to all people in a dark and deeply distressed world. Paul encourages us in Philippians 2:14-15 for us to “do everything without grumbling or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation. Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky.” We are called to shine the joy of the Lord to everyone we come into contact with.

rejoiceBut the joy of the Lord is not just for others. It is for believers as an encouragement in their faith. Nehemiah 8:10 reminds us, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” The joy of the Lord fortifies our faith against discouragement while infusing us with resilient, unwavering peace. That is why Paul further encourages us in Philippians 4:4 to “rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”

That contagious spirit of joy becomes a tantalizing aroma, drawing people to find true fulfillment in God. Jesus promised an abundant life of overflowing joy is made complete in relationship with Him (John 15:11). So let’s ask the Holy Spirit daily to realign our perspectives when they drift negatively, quickening our souls to bubble over with laughter, gladness and ceaseless praise! Real joy found in the Lord.


Everyday we have an opportunity to radiate Christ. We can be joyful ambassadors of the hope, like Tammy was. The world is desperate for real joy. That is why we need to go ahead and proclaim the joy of the Lord who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light (1 Peter 2:9). Let your joy shine, Just as Tammy did, and make an eternal difference in the lives of others around you.

At New Life, we offer a variety of Bible reading plans for exploring God’s word and practically applying it to our lives today. If you would like to be part of a Bible reading plan, check out the different options here.