Joy, Joy, Joy!

joy

Have you seen those glorious looking, shiny, sparkly and fragrant bath bombs? A friend bought me some for my birthday recently and before I even opened the box I could smell them.

I have added a photo of one of them to give you the idea.Bath Bomb 2.jpeg

On the way to church God brought to my mind the bath bombs and I asked Him why. He wanted to remind me that as humans we are like the bath bombs!! That’s right we’re like the bath bombs!

How, you might ask?

Well, bath bombs come in a massive variety of colours, shades, some sparkly some not and the distinctive thing about them all is that they have a strong fragrance. When you see them in the shop, box, by the bath they draw your eye to them and you smell their scent before you even see them. But, they do not fulfil their potential, their purpose, until they are added to water.

Then a chemical reaction takes place, a change occurs that can only be brought about in the water. The bath bomb becomes effervescent, frothy, exciting and joyful to look at as it scoots about in the water spreading it’s colour and glitter liberally through the water and releasing it’s heady scent into the air. This is what the bath bomb was made for, not simply to be kept in the bathroom in it’s box but added to the water to be activated. We then get to soak in it’s gooey goodness and emerge from the bath completely seeped in it’s fragrance. I also realised that we’re not the only ones who get to enjoy it but for all those people we come into contact with or pass by, they get to enjoy the scent we leave in our wake.

I’m sure you can see where this is going, right?

So, just like the bath bombs we are created by God in different shapes and styles, to be colourful, attractive to non-Christians and have the fragrance of Jesus on us, but there’s even more to us than that. When we are added to the right conditions we become what we were created for…

A joy filled love bomb for the world around us!

I felt God talking to me about abiding in His presence and just like the bath bombs, when added to the water (His presence) we become a source of joy as we do what we were created for, just like the bath bombs. We will know a true joy deep within us as we soak in His presence and we can experience this effervescence and fullness of joy whatever our circumstances are, good or bad.

This is a promise to us as it says in the bible,

Psalm 16:11 You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.

Now the thing about joy is that sometimes we may not feel joyful but we can make a choice to choose joy in every situation in life and this is not a joy dictated by what is happening around us but by spending time with the Father and just basking in His presence. You can’t help but feel happier, calmer, peaceful, content and joyful when you have been with Him and you always come away with the fragrance of Jesus on you. This is not just for your benefit but for the world around you as you get to show Jesus to those you come into contact with.

Whether we feel like a joy filled bath bomb or not the truth is that as Christians we have so much to be joyful for and it can be so easy to forget this when we are walking through tough, painful seasons when anxiety or worry are knocking at the door. But…

Psalm 94:19 When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy.

1Peter 1:8-9 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Isaiah 61:10 I delight greatly in the Lordmy soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

You see the joy of the Lord is our strength (Neh 8:10) and this gives me great comfort and this it’s one of my favourite bible verses. I cling onto this when things are tough and I intentionally choose to be joyful.

I spent a month last January making a conscious daily choice to choose joy as I felt God asked me to make choices all year and it all started with joy. As the month went on and I daily chose joy it became the first thing I thought about when I woke up and in different situations I would be reminded that I could make a choice in that moment about how to react.

The phrase that comes to mind is,

We become what we behold.”  Marshall Mcluhan

When we set something before us and look at it regularly we are changing the way we think and it slowly becomes our go to response. Research shows (Phillipa Lally) that it can take anywhere from 18 to 254 days to form a new habit depending on the person, behaviour and the circumstances. So during January I daily thought about choosing joy and low and behold that is what happened over the month.

So, back to the bath bombs and whether you feel it today or not does not change the truth of the matter. We are created to be vessels of His joy and we can shift atmospheres and change situations just by being joyful. Get some time to soak in His presence and allow Him to fill you with the fullness of joy so that you are effervescent and bubbling over to touch a world that is desperate for a joy filled, Jesus smelling ball of joy.

2Cor 2:14-16 Message

 In the Messiah, in Christ, God leads us from place to place in one perpetual victory parade. Through us, he brings knowledge of Christ. Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life.

 

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