Why do we need joy?

We live as individuals but share in the human experience. This post series asks the core questions of what, why, and how about this shared experience. After all, God came to earth as a human himself, to share that experience with us and bring us salvation through that human experience. So, join us today as we explore the core question… why do we need joy?

We need joy to make wise decisions

As we saw in our last post answering the question “What is Joy?” there is a difference between happiness and joy.  We cannot make decisions based on our feelings of happiness, anger, or sadness.  Instead, we can (and should) make decisions based on truth. Joy is an internal certainty, a fruit of God’s presence and work in our lives, that points us to truth. We need joy as a stable foundation guiding us in a world that is constantly changing, when our emotions are up and down.

We need joy to get through difficult circumstances

This world is broken, hard, and wearisome. Yet this world does not own us! Joy is given to Christians to remind us that Jesus Christ has overcome this world, and we have new life in him.

Hebrews 12:2 points this out for us: Jesus endured the shame and torture of the cross because there was “joy set before him.” He did not enjoy the crucifixion, but He endured it. Why? Because the joy ahead of him was greater, deeper, and worth enduring the difficult circumstance that He was in.

A Focus on the Family article points out that:

“Although happiness and joy can be present at the same time, happiness is based on material things or events, such as when a person is given a gift, graduates from college or celebrates a birthday.

Joy, on the other hand, is from God and runs deeper — it can be present even during unhappy times. Do you have God’s joy?”

We may enjoy happiness, but we need joy. It centers us in the deep truth of what Jesus has already accomplished, and reminds us that victory is certain.


*That same link to a Focus on the Family article includes a variety of activities that you can ue with kids, tweens, and teens to help them better understand and grasp the truth of joy. Check it out!