5 For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence,
for my hope is from him.
6 He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
7 On God rests my salvation and my glory;
my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
As I continue to struggle with this question, I am starting to discover a new interpretation of the word “joy” (Noun): To maintain an inner steadiness and quiet patience from trusting God’s goodness and promises. You don’t have to dance and shout in order to be joyful. Joy can simply come from an inner knowledge and confidence in God’s faithfulness.
Being Christian is not supposed to be easy, and I take great comfort in understanding today, that his power is made perfect in my weakness. The very fact of our trust in discomfort and struggle is proof that God’s Spirit is in us; for in my own flesh I do not and cannot desire him.
1 Peter 1:7
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
And the words of the LORD are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times.
For you, God, tested us; you refined us like silver.
See, I have refined you, though not as silver; I have tested you in the furnace of affliction.
Therefore this is what the LORD Almighty says: “See, I will refine and test them, for what else can I do because of the sin of my people?
Some of the wise will stumble, so that they may be refined, purified and made spotless until the time of the end, for it will still come at the appointed time.
This third I will put into the fire; I will refine them like silver and test them like gold. They will call on my name and I will answer them; I will say, ‘They are my people,’ and they will say, ‘The LORD is our God.’”
I totally agree about what joy is about!!! Sadly many Christians got it all wrong and sort of think you are a 2nd class Christian if you don’t smile all the time. I have quite some bad experiences in this matter 😦
I’m really sorry for your bad experiences, that’s just what drives many people from church. Even well-meaning Christians that are trying to help you, tell you a narrow-minded or even incorrect view of what it means to be joyful in hope. Especially because I’m an introvert and am inclined toward solitude and depression, I’m not your typical happy-go-lucky christian. Don’t feel abnormal. If anything, it is abnormal to be happy all the time – perhaps they are so because they are not wrestling with God http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Genesis%2032:22-31&version=NIV