Finding Joy

"He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God." - Psa 40:3 ESV.

"It's tough to be grumpy when you're giving a compliment; It's hard to worry when you're singing in celebration." These wise words resonate with the human experience, reminding us that our emotions are often influenced by our actions. In this article, we'll explore the transformative power of joy, drawing inspiration from Psalms 40:1-11. We will delve into the age-old debate of whether happiness is an internal or external pursuit, and discover how God can grant us a new song that emanates from the depths of our hearts.

There are times when life's challenges weigh us down, and we find ourselves in a sea of negativity. However, there are ways to change our mood and embrace joy, even in the darkest of moments. Just as the saying suggests, "There is power in positive action." Here are some of them:

1. Engage in Positive Activities: Celebrations, recreation, adventure, and spending time with loved ones can elevate our spirits. These activities create moments of joy and can shift our focus from worries to happiness.

2. Feeding Our Senses: Surrounding ourselves with pleasurable experiences like listening to uplifting music, appreciating beautiful art, or watching inspiring movies can stimulate our senses and uplift our mood.

3. The Power of Imagination: For some, daydreaming or fantasizing serves as an escape from the mundane. It allows us to explore the realms of possibility, opening doors to newfound happiness.

4. Retreat to Meditate: Sometimes all it takes to change our mood is to have a change of environment. Even Jesus had to find those moments of solitude, sometimes up the mountains, some secluede place or just about anywhere away from the usual.

Now, let's address the age-old question: is joy something we can achieve by "fake it until we make it" method, meaning from the outside, or must it radiate from within? Advocates of the outside-in approach believe that by engaging in positive actions and surroundings, we can cultivate genuine happiness. They argue that, over time, these external influences will shape our internal disposition. In the words of American author Dale Carnegie, "Act enthusiastic, and you will be enthusiastic."

On the other hand, proponents of an inside-out approach insist that true joy must originate from within. It cannot be faked or fabricated. This perspective suggests that happiness should not depend on external circumstances. This suggests that the seed of joy must either be received or planted in us for this to radiate to the outside. The question is, received from whom or planted by whom?

In Psalms 40:1-11, we find a profound truth that transcends the external vs. internal debate. God has the power to grant us a new song that is unlike any other. This is not a song to be memorized or performed; it's a melody that emerges from the depths of our hearts, transforming us into composers of gratitude and gladness. Unlike conventional songs, this divine melody does not rely on musical instruments or lyrics. It transcends the need for external stimuli. It is a song that simply expresses our profound gratitude and joy towards God. This melody emanates from our innermost being, a testament to the profound connection between our soul and the Divine.

In the words of the renowned preacher Charles Spurgeon, "The soul, when it is truly renewed, becomes a living psalm, a sacred sonnet, a heavenly ballad, which renders glory to the Lord." How does this soul renewal happen? Through faith. This new song is not something we manufacture through external actions; it is a gift from God Himself. to those who have faith and trust in the Lord. By some supernatural means known inly to Him, our Creator can infuse our hearts with a melody of gratitude and gladness that transcends earthly circumstances.

In conclusion, the pursuit of joy is a multifaceted journey that involves both internal and external elements. While we can engage in positive actions and experiences to uplift our spirits though perhaps just momentarily, true joy, as revealed in Psalms 40:1-11, is a divine gift that originates from within. It is a melody of the heart, a song of gratitude and gladness that connects us to the source of all joy—God Himself. Let us also seek God's gift of a new song, allowing His presence to fill our hearts with a melody that transcends the limitations of this world.