(Orange, Texas)


December 22, 2012

How can you have joy in the midst of tragedy?

ORANGE — As Christians we make a difference between happiness and joy. Happiness is based on the word 'hap'. In Middle English this word means 'Chance' or 'Good Luck'. The word 'hap' can also be seen in the word perhaps i.e. by any chance. If we base our definition on that terminology we can see that happiness is basically a matter of luck or chance, in other words, happiness is a response to whatever takes place. But joy doesn’t come from chance happenings or circumstances. Joy is found in a promise and a hope that the prophesy of Isaiah is real.

Isaiah 35: The desert and the parched land will be glad; the wilderness will rejoice and blossom. Like the crocus, 2 it will burst into bloom; it will rejoice greatly and shout for joy. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; they will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God. 3 Strengthen the feeble hands,

steady the knees that give way; 4 say to those with fearful hearts, “Be strong, do not fear;

your God will come, he will come with vengeance; with divine retribution he will come to save you.” 5 Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped. 6 Then will the lame leap like a deer, and the mute tongue shout for joy.

Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. 7 The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs. In the haunts where jackals once lay, grass and reeds and papyrus will grow. 8 And a highway will be there; it will be called the Way of Holiness; it will be for those who walk on that Way.

The unclean will not journey on it; wicked fools will not go about on it. 9 No lion will be there, nor any ravenous beast; they will not be found there.

But only the redeemed will walk there, 10 and those the Lord has rescued will return.

They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

The prophesy is about Jesus Christ our Savior the one born to put together all the brokenness and mend our lives to rescue us and usher in a life of everlasting joy. That is the joy that carries us through the tough times of this life. The joy is; we get to know the outcome.

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