Excellence, Faith, Freedom, Influence, Purpose

Jealousy and Joy

Welcome back to Faith Connection Friday! This week we discover some uncommon characteristics of God. 

A fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5 is joy. When we think of joy, we may associate it primarily with happiness. However, they are actually separate. Happiness relates to an elation in circumstances. Joy is an inner, somewhat indescribable, peace. Joy is not necessarily a feeling, though it may be. Receiving satisfaction as a result of a hope or longing fulfilled. Being part of something important. Reading God’s Word. Praying. Enjoying time with friends. Seeing lives changed for eternity and watching others grow spiritually. Exercising spiritual gifts. How about having a peace we cannot explain as we go through a difficult time? Displaying strength when others around you seem to not understand. These can be expressions of joy. Not only a feeling but a peace, an awareness of God’s presence and love. What can you add to the list? 

Another characteristic of God is, in fact, jealousy. We normally think of jealousy as something we are not to have. However, it is a characteristic displayed in Scripture. If we take the Book of Hosea, for example, God is affectionately jealous for Hosea to love his wife, Gomer. God was jealous for Gomer so she could experience Hosea’s unconditional love and faithfulness. He wanted the best for her. The story of Hosea is an example as well of God’s unconditional love and faithfulness to us. He wants the best for us. He remains faithful and draws us to Himself because He knows the pain we experience if we follow our own ways. He protects us from what could be. I encourage you to read the Book of Hosea, for it is filled with the way God pursues us.

So, what can we learn from these characteristics? When we get a glimpse of the jealousy God has for us, we experience joy. It is the satisfaction of knowing that He truly loves us no matter how much we mess up. He knows us so well and wants the best for us, which is why He continually invites us to pray and read His Word–so we can experience His joy.

Our Faith Connection for this week: Identify what brings you joy. Thank God for the peace that He gives in that moment. In what way is God drawing you toward Him? Run to Him and not away from Him. Embrace Him, knowing He wants the best for you, and He will use the situation for good. Read the Book of Hosea and be amazed at the expressions of God’s love for you.

Lord, I thank You for this precious one who seeks You. Draw them to You so they experience Your joy fully. In Your name. Amen.

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