Willie-Wag-Tails

“A joyful heart is good medicine, But a broken spirit dries up the bones. A joyful heart makes a cheerful face, But when the heart is sad, the spirit is broken.”1

Another pretty little black and white bird that is found where I grew up is appropriately named a willie-wag-tail. This is because these birds continually wag their long, feathered tail. Like a dog with a wagging tail, willie-wag-tails project a bright, cheery spirit wherever they go and are a delight to see.

Continue at: http://www.actsweb.org/daily.php?id=458

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Advance the kingdom: Choose joy

~ Tyler S. Ramey

A common passage in James says: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance” (1:2-3).  This message seems clear, but such an admonition also seems counterintuitive, even paradoxical in some ways.  I mean, c’mon . . . consider it pure joy?  About trials?  So often is this passage quoted during difficult times that the import of what James intended gets missed.

The Greek word used for “trials” in this passage is peirasmos, referring to certain types of trials, temptations really, not just any old run-of-the-mill difficulty.  Keep in mind that I don’t wish to minimize the travail caused by some trials, but James notes by his word choice that the difficulties to which he refers are those that have a divine purpose, were allowed by God, or were even sent by him.  Thus, James refers to trials that serve a specific purpose and that can be expected to benefit the believer as he or she endures them.  But how can the believer be expected to consider, say, some of the very worst of life’s crises occasions for joy?  Well, while James seems to command it based on an imperative construction, I don’t think the context of his words note an explicit command but, rather, imply a strong suggestion to choose joy during trials because the testing of one’s faith has a divine source—and that’s reason for joy in and of itself, for nothing that comes from God could have anything but good behind it.

Read more: http://truth-enterprises.com/Truth_Enterprises/ChooseJoy.html

3 Ways to keep your joy

“Joy is not necessarily the absence of suffering, it is the presence of God.”

– Sam Storms

COUNT IT ALL LOSS

James wrote about joy and specifically in James 1:2-3 wrote, “Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.”

If you knew that God was testing your faith, wouldn’t you think to be more joyful about it? It was easy for the Apostle Paul to compare this life and knowing Christ, as he wrote, “I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” (Phil 3:8). Christ is everything; everything else is trash!

Read more: http://www.christianquotes.info/images/3-ways-to-keep-your-joy/#ixzz4XHzjgauQ

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