And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you. (John 16:22 KJV)
If you want to know God’s presence, become a magnet for divine interventions, or be unconducive for demonic activity, protect your joy as the US secret service protects the US president. Joy in our hearts is like money stored in a chest; it can be snatched by joy takers. In this devotional, I will describe these joy takers, explain their primary purposes for stealing our joy, and enumerate some steps to guard our joy.
Joy takers are things or people that snatch joy from our hearts. The joy in a believer’s heart is an emotion that proceeds from the Spirit (the source) but can be changed by external circumstances (the flesh). Concerning the seed of joy from the Spirit in our hearts, Jesus says in John 16:22, “your joy no man taketh from you.” It is impossible for anything or anyone to take away the Spirit from our hearts. Since the seed of joy from the Spirit cannot be stolen, joy takers use the backdoor—they use external circumstances in our lives that directly influence our joy to control whether we are joyful or not.
Our broken emotions fluctuate with our external circumstances. Naturally, we tend to be joyful when all is well but sorrowful in pain, suffering, or hardship. Therefore, anything that produces physical or emotional pain, suffering, or discomfort can remove joy from our hearts. For example, you went to work one day full of the Spirit and joy. But as soon as you got to work, one word from that co-worker drained the joy from your heart as water drains from a punctured reservoir. However, it might not always be a co-worker. It may, perhaps, be a loved one such as your spouse, child, parents, siblings, or neighbor. And remember that sometimes, we might be that someone attempting to snatch joy from another person’s heart. Or it might not even be someone; it could be something—financial difficulties, health challenges, the stock market, or the news!
Joy is taken away from our hearts when we allow our hearts to be controlled by external circumstances. When we walk by sight, then people’s behaviors and the events in our lives determine what we believe about ourselves. For example, people did not like our Facebook post, and we became sad. We have allowed people’s approval or disapproval to determine how we feel about ourselves instead of what the Word of God says. Anything or anyone that moves our eyes away from Jesus into our earthly circumstances will easily steal our joy. The secret then to protecting our joy is to keep our eyes fixated on what the Word of God says about us and what will happen to us. If we do this, we will anchor our hearts on the immovable seed of joy in our spirit rather than the fluctuating external circumstances.
So, protect your joy with all diligence, for it determines the manifestations of the supernatural in your life. Be a joy giver, not a joy taker, and do not allow anyone or anything to steal your joy.
What does Jesus mean by “your joy no man taketh from you”?
Apply the Word
Are you joyful? Do not wait to rejoice when all is well. Instead, it is your rejoicing in the difficulty that provokes a miracle. Rejoice in the Lord always!
Ask the Spirit to help you protect your joy at all times.