Maybe it’s just me but it seems we don’t talk in terms of “joy” much any more. Oh we will sometimes write it, like when we sign a Christmas card, “Have a joy-filled Christmas,” or perhaps in a letter, “The grandkids are such a joy!” But I can’t recall very many times I’ve heard the word in day-to-day speech — unless it was someone’s name.
Yet in 2015 when Oxford Dictionary selected for the first time ever a pictograph as its ‘Word of the Year’ it selected the ‘Face with Tears of Joy’ emoji (Its ‘official’ name). It was chosen as the ‘word’ that “best reflected the ethos, mood, and preoccupations of 2015.” Apparently this emoji represented 20% of the emojis used in the UK, and 17% of the emojis used in USA.
So what’s going on here with how we feel about communicating joy? It seems we are almost embarrassed by the word, yet needy of its expression.
But a caricature is not the real character.
Jesus revealed to His disciples His and the Father’s great love for them and added, “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11)
Love that brings joy is the real character of God, for “God is love,” summarized John (1 John 4:8). It is the real character of Jesus, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.” (John 15:9), and it is meant to be the real character of His children also, “This is my command: Love each other.” (John 15:17)
If we are wise… if we continually seek Jesus… if we give Him our all and allow Him to live through us… joy results in us “…that your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11), and in Him “…he that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him.” (Prov. 23:24), and bring “Joy to the World.”
And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.” (Luke 2:8-10)
😂 🤣 Merry Christmas! 😄 😅