One of the chief reasons for being joyful is that we might spread joy. Trying to spread sweet out of something sour does not work well. When listing the ‘fruits of the Spirit,’ Paul, an apostle, puts love first and joy second. There is a joy that is from the Spirit that is not necessarily from, or in, the flesh. Though it is nice when it is.
“All over the world people are hungry and thirsty for God’s love. We meet that hunger by spreading joy. Joy is one of the best safeguards against temptation.” Mother Teresa (1910-1997)
Until I read this, it had not entered my mind that ‘joy is one of the best safeguards against temptation.’ It seems obviously true. Finding and maintaining joy is important if only to protect us from temptation. Unhappy people are tempted more than happy people. Happy people spread joy… unhappy people spread unhappy.
“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” Jesus