you know, i realized recently that joy is something that i think only believers can truly experience. i was always told that happiness is circumstantial and joy is not based on surroundings or circumstance, but i don't think that i ever really fathomed the uniqueness of experiencing true joy till just last week. here's what God revealed to me about joy:
so my wonderful, beautiful roomate kristi, has been persued, wooed, and won over by my equally wonderful, beautiful (and tatooed) friend, phil. (since she's too busy in dreamyland to blog about it, i will!)
as i stood next to phil in church, singing praises to our God, after hearing him gush about how great she is, i could not stop smiling! i was so happy for her; for him, and so thankful that God had done something so cool for both of them. it had absolutely nothing to do with me, and yet i could not have been more happy if i had been the one in dreamyland. it occured to me that this experience of true joy for someone else is completely unique to the children of God. wow. remember "rejoice with those who rejoice and mourn with those who mourn". it's only possible through His Spirit. and i will tell you what, it is such a wonderful feeling. God is so good.
here's another joy experience God granted me: a few months ago i was walking across the crosswalk from the parking garage to the entrance of kettering hospital. (from time to time they are short staffed and sometimes our staff gets rotated over to the adult psych unit there) and for no reason what-so-ever, i was overcome with tremendous joy. it was not particularly beautiful weather, i don't really enjoy working the adult unit, i wasn't even thinking about anything profound that would make me smile, but yet i did. i couldn't help it. this was one of my favorite moments, and i can't even describe why. that is joy.