I sat down to write about how to have true joy. As I was thinking about what to write my son came out and began distracting me. He kept talking about nothing and wanting my attention and I started to get annoyed. Really annoyed. And I thought, I'm not joyful at all right now. In fact, I'm totally annoyed and growing grumpier by the minute. Because my environment is being disturbed. Maybe if I ignore him he'll go away and I can get back to my joyful mindset and blog about joy. And then God quietly reminded me...
I can choose to be joyful in any circumstance.
It doesn't matter if someone is distracting, disturbing, or flat out annoying me. That doesn't change the fact that the Holy Spirit empowers me to choose joy.
And that's the most powerful lesson I've learned. The Holy Spirit empowers us to have all his fruit...his love, his joy, his peace, his patience, his kindness, his goodness, his faithfulness, his gentleness, and his self-control (Galatians 5:22-23). But part of the equation for success is belief. Once you ask the Holy Spirit to fill you to overflowing and then ask for his fruits, you have to believe that you have received them and can live them out. So when your patience is being tried, remember that you asked for and have been given the His patience. You have it. It's yours. Use it. And when your life is utter chaos and your soul is longing for peace, remember you have His peace. It's yours. Utilize it. When you are out of kindness because someone has taken advantage of you too many times and you just don't have it in you anymore to show kindness, remember that you have been given His kindness.
And when you remember that you can't do anything on your own and you can rely only on God's strength to do anything, you'll have it. And there you'll stand...with his love, his joy, his peace, his patience, his kindness, his goodness, his faithfulness, his gentleness, and his self-control.