Ask about joy: What is joy?…There are three primary forms of joy: natural joy, moral joy and spiritual joy.
Talk about natural joy: ‘Natural Joy’ is defined as gladness raised up to the highest degree. Synonyms of joy include cheerfulness and contentment.
Talk about moral joy: ‘Moral joy’ arises after performing a good action, recognized as peace of the conscience. When we do something altruistic, or a service to someone in need, we experience a sense of peace.
Ask about ‘moral joy’: When have you experienced moral joy?
Ask about glory: How would you describe glory or giving something glory?
Talk about glory: Glory is defined as honoring something or someone with great joy.
Ask about glorifying God: At what moments in your life do you feel you are glorifying God?
Talk about personal example of glorifying God: As for me, it gives me great joy bringing you guys together to honor God through discussing his word, experiencing fellowship, accountability and worshipping God together.
Talk about spiritual joy: ‘Spiritual joy’ is defined as the one of many fruits that has been gifted to us by the Holy Spirit. Spiritual joy has several parts, including ‘the joy of faith’ and ‘the rejoicing of hope’
Read Gal 5:22-26
Ask about the fruit of the spirit: Remind me again what the fruit of the spirit are?
Read Philippians 1:21-26
Ask about the joy of faith: How does faith produce joy?
Ask about living for Christ: What does it mean ‘to live is Christ, to die is gain’?… God promises that living for Him is rewarding and dying for Him will remove you from the earthly troubles and grant you eternal salvation with your decision to live for Him.
Talk about remaining in God: God expressed to us that we will experience joy when we remain in Him. Again, this is ‘the joy of faith’.
Talk about faith: God says we will experience joy when we remain in faith in him. Why do we experience joy when we remain in faith in God?
Talk about bragging: Read verse 25-26 again. What are things that we often brag about?…We often brag when we are proud of something (e.g. a high score on a game, an achievement, when someone we love has achieved something great). Remember how much joy you experience when you experience something like that. Multiply that amount of joy by a million. If we allow God to, he will fill you up with so much joy in faith, you might even cry or fall to your knees. If that were the case, we could not help but boast. What often prevents us from being in his full presence?
Read Hebrews 3:1-6
Talk about remaining hopeful: Look at verse 6 again. We should remain courageous, joyful, and hopeful until the end since Christ lives in us as believers. As Christians, what are we hopeful about?…God fulfilling His promises (e.g. Christ’s return and salvation to believers in Christ). This is ‘the rejoicing of hope’.
Read 1 Peter 1:8-9…Spiritual joy is everlasting and permanent. It’s so worth it to pursue it.
Ask about living for God: Is it possible to supposedly live for God and not feel spiritual joy?…We may sometimes get wrapped up into the busyness of our life and it may appear boring or hectic at times, which can turn our attention from experiencing the fullness of our God. When we were younger, the world appeared 1000% cooler and more fun than it appears now. We would run around with our family and friends and scream because we were full of joy and excitement. When we saw a guy with a big mustache, we couldn’t help but giggle and point our finger at it. Even going to the beach or ocean was such a magnificent experience. As for me, there was nothing more fun and exciting than getting chased by the waves or throwing rocks into the ocean. I was in awe of everything.
Ask about being in awe of God: Have you ever experienced a Christian that appeared to always be in awe of God? These people often portrayed what characteristics?…(1) Not afraid of persecution, (2) Never too busy for God, (3) Spends time in the word daily, (4) Expresses infectious joy to others, and (5) Always living selflessly.
Ask about discipline: How do we get to this level of discipline?…It is indeed hard to become a top-notch-Christ-follower. It isn’t easy being sinless. Actually, it’s nearly impossible. Even if you struggle in achieving these, God still loves you. Don’t worry. There is always going to be something that we are not perfect at.
Talk about obstacles: We all are confronted with obstacles to our faith in God. We all have something that may interfere with us experiencing the fullness of God. I challenge you to find it, acknowledge it, and work on containing or getting rid of it.
Ask about general examples of obstacles: In general, what are some obstacles that Christians often face as they attempt to experience the fullness of God’s joy?…Some of the obstacles include discouragement from peers, the news, social media, people that disagree with your beliefs (e.g. political, religious) or values, negative experiences with ex-partners, an addiction.
Ask about personal examples of obstacles: What are some obstacles that you have faced that have appeared to interfere with experiencing the fullness of God?
Read Romans 8:31-39
Talk about scripture: According to this scripture, what do we need to remember always about God’s love?…Nothing can separate us from God’s love. Honestly, we need to stop acting like we are separated from God’s love. If we have Christ, we have the gift of joy. Don’t forget that.