What is the Secret of Joy in This Life …
Joy in Life – Adoration of Our Lord.
In St. Paul’s first epistle to the Thessalonian church, he instructed them as follows: “Be joyful always…” [1 Th 5:16]. Millions of people living in the world suffer from varying degrees of depression. Just take a stroll through your local grocery store, library, or mall, and you’ll see the sadness and misery on people’s faces. Check out the faces of those with whom you work. It seems that depression and sadness are everywhere, even in the church. I don’t think there’s anything more heartbreaking than to see someone sitting in Mass with a countenance that defies the very faith he or she professes to have in Christ, and yet, we see it all of the time, don’t we? Why is this? How can this be? How can there be depression even among those who are in Christ?

While some depression may be attributed to a genuine physical problem, I am convinced that most cases are the result of a deficiency of another sort.

The joy that Jesus wants us to experience is not based on our outward circumstances. If it was, then none of us could be expected to walk in joy, could we? We all have problems. We all have storm clouds of different shapes and sizes looming over us. Some are struggling in their marriages. Others may be experiencing heartache and frustration where their children are concerned. Others may be enduring difficult circumstances on the job. Many are facing economic hardships. The list goes on and on.

The secret to Christ’s joy is to live obediently before Him. In speaking to His disciples, Jesus instructed them as follows: “If you obey My commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed My Father’s commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” [Jn 15:10-11]. In these two verses, Jesus made two things very clear. First, if we desire to remain in His love, we have an obligation to walk in obedience to His commands and teachings. Being a follower of Christ entails more than just baptism and weekly Mass attendance. Through our baptismal call, each of us are called to love God, obey God, and serve God using the various gifts and talents He has given us to do so.

If we are called to live in obedience to the Word of God, then we must be willing to spend time in that Word, studying it, meditating on it, and praying over it. How can we put into practice that which we aren’t willing to diligently study? How can we grow in our knowledge and understanding of God and His will for our lives if we do not take the time to open up His Word each and every single day in order to meditate and reflect on it?

Thoughtful meditation as we read the Word of God on our own brings us closer to God, renews our minds, lines our thoughts up with Heaven, and teaches us exactly how He desires us to live. As we study God’s Word, we also see how He moved in the lives of others who were going through difficult times, yet trusted completely in Him.

If we want to remain in Christ’s love, then we must obey what He commands. And if we want to obey His commands, we must be willing to study and meditate on God’s Word on our own so that we will know exactly what it is that He commands.

I’m harping on obedience to God’s Word because it’s a key ingredient that must be in our lives if we desire to experience Christ’s joy and peace. The Lord Jesus Christ made it very clear in John 15:11 that to the extent we are walking in obedience to the Word of God is also to the extent we will experience the deep, inner joy of the Holy Spirit in our lives. “I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” [Jn 15:11].

If we are not living obediently to the Word of God, we cannot expect to have Christ’s inner joy welling up within us. When we violate God’s commandment to love Him with all of our heart, mind, soul, and strength, when we refuse to walk in obedience to the Word of God, and when we refuse to give Christ supremacy in our loves, we grieve the Spirit of God within us, and I am convinced that it is this supernatural grief which is often the source of men’s depression. Pills won’t take this kind of depression away, only repentance will. We are God’s creation. We were created by Him and for Him. When we live lives that are for ourselves, rather than for Him, we end up frustrated, discontent, anxious, unhappy, weary, and worn out.
The secret of true joy in this life, a true joyful life, is the secret that God is Love, all Love comes from God.
Love is willing the good of anothe, not yourself. Love is not a feeling but an act of will.

Many who identify themselves as Christians are not experiencing the joy of the Lord because they are not

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If there wasn’t anything else in a soul but the desire to love God, this would be sufficient because God Himself is there. He is not present where there is no desire to love Him.  –  St. Padre Pio

The secret of joy in this life. What is the secret of joy in life

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