The seventy-two returned with joy and said,
“Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.”
Luke 10:17 (NIV)
A sermon I experienced on April 22nd seemed to fit very well into the current Prevail, Praise, and Pray Series. I’ve attended my current church since early December 2017. While the words don’t do it full justice, they address the joy-happiness conundrum that Christians face (my Pastor is an anointed, gifted preacher, in his early 50s, who’d never be mistaken for a statute).
Sermon by Pastor Ronald E. Speas
Theme: “The Reason I Have Joy”
Scripture – Luke 10: 17 – 20
Location: New Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church (Winston-Salem, NC)
How can one walk with Jesus -and prevail- if one doesn’t have joy? In my humble Christian opinion they can’t!
Below is an overview of the Sermon that my Pastor, Rev. Ronald E. Speas, gave a few weeks ago.
- Joy is not the same as happiness
- Joy is one of the ‘fruits of the spirit‘ (Galatians 5)
- The Lord gives us the power to deal with life’s ‘serpents‘ . . . so that even if they bite someone they won’t harm them.
- This scripture reminds us that we should: Be aware of who and what you’re dealing with; be humble, not arrogant.
- Joy and happiness are similar, but they are different in many ways too.
- Joy is from God (the Almighty), while happiness is “dependent on something happening to one” (i.e. it’s situational).
- Happiness is temporal
- Joy is lasting. Even in times of sorrow, joy still endures.
- The joy I have. The world didn’t give it to me, the world can’t take it away.
- Follow God’s insight, follow God’s warning. Those with spiritual discernment are good God followers.
- “God doesn’t share his glory with nobody”
- Maintain your joy, because it serves as “your connection to the Lord”. ‘Smile, even when all hell brakes loss’. Forgive.
Rev. Ronald E. Speas
While what I’ve just described is just the tip of the iceberg, I felt it was a Message from a great man of God that I couldn’t keep to myself.
It’s through their Joy that Prevailers endure and thrive. Joy for those who are connected to God isn’t fleeting. It isn’t ‘of the world’. It’s from the Lord. It allows Christians to have assurance that God ‘has their back’. It allows them to endure with faith while weeping, knowing what’s ‘coming in the morning’ (joy). While some days you and I will cry tears of sadness, others we’ll shed tears of Joy.
I thank my Pastor, Ronald E. Speas, for telling me -and the others in church that morning- the reasons he has joy. He got it from our Almighty God, not online or in a store. Joy, like faith, can not be bought. His joy, like yours and mine, comes from our Heavenly Father. To God, the Joy Giver, be the Glory! Isn’t he worthy to be praised?
Greg Silverthorne, 66 Assurance Way
Photo credit: “They Got the Word“, Mississippi Mass Choir