The Ways to Joy

Chic Broersma

READ : Acts 16:11-31

About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God . . . (v. 25)

Billy Sunday once said, “If you don’t have joy, you’ve got a leak in your religion.”

Yet you can’t find joy by seeking it, any more than you can find happiness by pursuing it. Both joy and happiness are by-products. They come as a surprise, while you are on your way to something else.

Paul’s letter to the Philippians has been called “A Letter of Joy” because the little word joy appears so often. As he focused on making gratitude a habit, living in harmony with others, replacing anxiety with prayer, and faithfully walking in obedience, Paul found something else – joy. Because serving God was the goal of his life, Paul was able to rejoice even in prison, at midnight, his feet in the stocks.

Philippians will help us explore how we too may walk in these ways, and in so doing, find joy deep within. Joy, like good health, is largely a gift. Yet good health can be nurtured by a good diet, proper sleep, and exercise. So too, joy can be nurtured by walking further along the paths of obedience. A path is a way. So we’re calling our time together “The Ways to Joy.”

PRAYER

Lord, lead me on the path to joy.