The following word was given to me on January 3, 2002.
THE LORD SAYS:
You have gotten discouraged by the battle, by the length of time. Turn to me now and find strength. Find strength in joy and in laughter, find medicine. (Neh 8:10; Pr 17:22)
Joy is the MEASURE of the kingdom of God. It is what makes up the ATMOSPHERE of heaven. It is the CONNECTION between the flesh and the Spirit. Turn to me, soak in the joy of my presence, and the love of God will flow in grace, leading to mercy.
I speak of joy, not fleshly happiness. Happiness is the result of your efforts. Joy is the result of my grace and sacrifice. Joy is an OUTFLOW of the love of God. It is pure and holy and obtained only through the love of God and a yieldedness to my Spirit, who is love, who is joy.
For too long, my church has modeled the image of the world, has peddled in greed and lust and called it wisdom. Has chosen offense and bitterness and justified itself saying, “I can do this because …” But this wisdom is not from above. It is sensual and devilish. (Jas 3:15) Just as the lust of the flesh comes from self-effort with the eye on personal gain, “how I feel,” “what I want,” the love of God and the joy of God come only through God’s lavish gift. (Eph 1:3 TPT) They cannot be gotten through your own effort just as a man cannot save himself from spiritual death through endless rituals or church programs or a thousand bland confessions. Guard your words and guard your heart, yes, but speak praise; speak blessing even over your enemies. (Lk 6:27) Choose to not take offense and choose to pray blessing on them. Your emotions have nothing to do with the solution. Your feelings on the matter cloud God’s purpose.
Your intelligence stands in opposition. See Adam, the most intelligent man to have lived, and see sin still bring death to mankind through him. Walk by faith. Faith is the MOVEMENT, the action, in the kingdom that brings joy to you. Joy is the FUEL and the AUTHORITY of it comes by grace.
What is grace? I drew this analogy for the writer of this epistle. Self-promotion is like riding a bicycle across the Grand Canyon. All your self-effort, all your pedaling will not take you through midair. Self-effort through lust, through offensive words, through bitterness and hate is that bicycle; you seek to tear another down to lift up yourself and will fall flat in the process.
Grace is a hot air balloon piloted by me. Only those willing to lay down their efforts and step into grace will enjoy the fruits of the kingdom. See these fruits in Galatians 5:22-23.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” (Galatians 5:22-23 KJV)
See their source is the Spirit and know their purchase is by grace. Only a tree planted by my river will flourish and abound in fruit at each season. (Ps 1:3) Only a tree fertilized by the Word, and I am the Word, will produce anything fit to eat. And only a man who lays down who he is and chooses to walk yielded to my life will fly free.
Joy is PRODUCED by love. Love is the MOTIVATION for joy, and joy is the MANIFESTATION of the kingdom of God in you. You will know you are mine by your joy in the midst of difficult circumstances, by the laughter that comes from deep within. I am God, but I was man. I am Savior, but I am Friend. I desire your fulfillment. I desire your time spent with me. Some preach awe and reverence, and the sacrifice of holiness. These are important. These you should seek. But not at the expense of joy, second fruit in the kingdom. Without joy you will not find peace, have longsuffering, be gentle, or walk by faith.
Joy is the CURRENCY of the kingdom of God. It is what purchases everything else. Joy is the CALIBER, the CAPACITY, the EXCELLENCE and QUALITY of the kingdom of God. It is the web from which all blessings hang, and it is found only through grace, only by faith, and only in the Spirit of God and through me. It is the Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. (Lk 12:32) He EN-JOYS it and seeks worshipers who will take hold when your joy makes no sense. In laughter is your healing and in joy is your strength.
“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.” (Romans 14:17 KJV)
“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” (Romans 15:13 KJV)
Suzanne D. Williams, Author