You have put joy in my heart, more than when the grain and new wine are abundant. In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For You alone, Lord, have me dwell in safety.  Psalm 4:7-8

Joy and peace are my guardians.

I focus on joy and peace in my prayers because I can discern when I do not have joy and peace. I find it difficult to know if I’m humble, if I’m loving, or if I’m merciful.

Others have better discernment in my humility, lovingkindness, or mercy!!!!

I know when joy and peace are gone. Since they are from God’s Spirit, if they are not there, something is wrong. Joy and peace stand at the gates of my soul and guard my spiritual, psychological, and physical vitality.

If they are gone when I wake up, after a conversation at lunch, during a disagreement with my wife, before or after a business decision, I need to know, I need to recognize it, and I need to find out why my joy and peace guardians have left.

When joy and peace aren’t guarding at the gates, either I’m being attacked, or I need to repent (change my mind or direction). Living long without either joy or peace defines misery.

Pastor Grant Note:  Some of you have lived in misery too long. Do you have joy and peace? Why not? Joy and peace are the guardians of your happiness.

Let me give you a brief description of both joy and peace. Defining these guardians can help you quickly discern when they are off duty. I check my joy and peace guardians every night before I go to bed, “God, do I have peace after this day? God, do I have joy now?”

Psalm 4 indicates a good night’s sleep comes from joy and peace.

Find your joy and peace when you lay down at night! The great news? You do not earn joy and peace. Your guardians, like angels, are assigned by God.

For you alone, Lord, have me – allowed me – to dwell in safety as I sleep.  Psalm 4:8 (OGV)

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace…!  Galatians 5:22

Joy:

Literally a euphoric feeling that comes from the presence of God and other relationships. Consider your first love or crush. Great relationships, though the emotions go up and down, are exciting. Euphoric joy is filled with anticipation. Do you have joy in your future? Even in trials, joy gives a “glass half full” view of living (James 1:2 and Philippians 4:4).

Your “joy” guardian is standing at the gates when you love relationships and have hope.

Peace:

Rest! Can you sense when something is not right? That’s your peace guardian sounding an alarm. Whereas joy is more external (you can see when someone has joy); peace is internal. The presence of God always brings an “it’s okay” confidence.

Those who have peace walk in faith.

Your “peace” guardian is standing at the gate if you continue moving forward in life. You are not stuck. You confidently take steps of faith. You are not throttled by fear or anxiety.

God wants you to be happy. Happiness is equal parts joy and peace.

Joy and peace standing guard? Know they are on duty when you have joy and peace in a decision. Do you see your guardians in relationships (if not, flee!)?  Joy and peace protect you from fear, doubt, and anxiety.

Joy and peace bring happiness.

Those who have joy and peace are the busiest people I know. The guardians leave when they are not needed. If you have lost your path or are dwelling in lethargy, you don’t have joy or peace

Joy and Peace!

Please read Interruption #194 – Psalm 4 for 2021! 

Read all the Interruptions at www.grantedwardsauthor.com.