Happy Does Not = Joy

Psalm 4:7

“Fill my heart with joy…”


I don’t know about you, but it’s reassuring to me that David asks God to ‘fill his heart with joy’.  By asking he indicates that ‘the man after God’s own heart’ wasn’t always joy-filled.  I’m a happy person, but not naturally joyful.  I wish I was; it sounds so exciting to live a joy filled life.  As I’ve moved through the different seasons of my life whether I was on the top of the mountain or in the pit of the valley, I would appear happy to others.  You see, I can show happiness even if I’m not.


Joy is an interesting trait that is difficult to explain and understand. You can be on the top of the world with everything going right and not have joy and you can be in the darkest of valleys and have joy.  Joy is a divine matter of heart.  It doesn’t come and go based on external circumstances.  It can’t be simplified to being an emotion like happiness or excitement; it is much more complex than that.  It is a God given gift when we put ourselves in a place where God can fill our hearts with joy.  Is it possible to have joy apart from God? Not for me, I can’t make myself joyful; only God can.  I can produce happiness even if I’m not; put a smile on my face, but I can’t create joy.  So I pray like David, ‘Lord, fill my heart with joy’.





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