The Nadel family- Enjoy reading our everyday adventures!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Got Joy?

It seems like as a parent, we try to teach our children lots of lessons. Sometimes the lessons come and smack ME in the face, as I need to learn it right along with them! We work a LOT in our house with kind words, talking instead of hurting others, and having a GOOD attitude. I know I struggle with having a good attitude at times, as all of my kids do, especially my son. I don't know if it is a phase he is in since he is 8, or if it is partly a conflict between the mother/ son relationship, but we struggle with his attitude pretty much daily. We've been trying to find a solution for his rudeness, disrespect and overall bad attitude. (He seems to be better since we talked about it that day, he still has his moments though... I did get a suggestion from a friend to give him a mark when he has a non-bad attitude day, and when he gets so many marks, he gets a treat. We may have to try it if we need it...)

We talked about JOY on Monday, and what that means. We sang, "I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart. Where? Down in my heart! Where? Down in my heart! I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart, down in my heart to stay." And the verses go on, "I've got the love of Jesus, love of Jesus down in my heart..."; "I've got the peace that passes understanding down in my heart..." That was a song from my childhood, and I found myself singing it for a few days!

Then later that Monday, I read my NIV Study Bible during my devotional time, and it talked about Acts 16, where Paul and Silas were thrown into prison, chained by their hands and feet. And what did they do? They praised God and sang songs to Him!

This was a lesson I found that related well to joy, and the NIV Study Bible says this..."What is more amazing is the joy and peace Paul and Silas experience during the entire course of events. What do they have to sing about? Where does joy originate? (Neh. 12:43; Ps 43:4) What produces joy in an unbeliever (Acts 14:17)? What produces joy in a believer (Acts 8:5-8, 16:34)? How is this joy produced in you (1 Thess. 1:6)? Joy is a fruit produced by the presence of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22). Jesus says an intimate relationship with him ("remain in my love") through obedience to God's commands is the way to complete joy (John 15:10-11). Is your relationship with Jesus intimate enough to produce complete joy? What can you do to receive this complete joy (John 16:24)? What happens to your joy when troubles come? How can you retain your joy in times of trial (Ps 33:16-22)? Jesus knows life is filled with trouble and suffering (John 16:33, 17:13-15). How is joy compatible with suffering (James 1:2-4; 1 Peter 1:6-9)? 
The struggles and tragedies of this life need not affect your joy as a child of God. True joy is based on the spiritual realities of who God is and what he had promised. God IS good and God IS faithful--regardless of your situation. Paul and Silas learn this truth, and they have much to sing about."

Another song that relates well to this subject is "Grape, Grape Joy" by Amy Grant. It's one of my favorite old songs! You can listen to it here.  Here are the lyrics:

Amy Grant Grape, Grape Joy Lyrics

I am a small and lonely grape,
Clutching to the vine,
Waiting for the day when I'll become my Savior's wine!

Oh, wouldn't French cuisine just yearn it,
I've eternity to ferment,
But knowing me I'd end up ripple
In a cellar of cheblis.

Are you a small and lonely grape
Clutching to the vine,
Waiting for the day when you'll become your Savior's wine?

Don't give up hope ye heavy laden,
You don't want to be a raisin;
There's a grape grape joy in Jesus,
In the vineyard of the Lord.

Do you have JOY in your heart today? Not just flittering happiness that changes easily with your circumstances, but true deep down joy? If so, praise God and give thanks! He is truly worthy of our praise! 

1 comment:

  1. I can relate to the bad attitude. I really think it's the age. We went through it with my daughter for a year and a half (yea, there's hope for ya :)). It's just now getting better as she nears 10! For her it was testing, testing, testing. The louder we "screamed" (yes, on some days, I sadly did), the worse it was. Keep prayng and it with a lot of love, they seem to pull out of it. Blessings!


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