Was I the only one that had those pink “13-year-old” looking stickers on their wall that said, Love Joy Peace. Okay actually, they are still on my wall at home...oops. At thirteen, I am not sure I really understood the importance of those three words when I put them up. At nineteen, I think they perfectly describe who God is and what He gives each of us. Ah, yes. Classic Christian answer. But I am sincere in saying that what I write is what I believe, what I believe is what I strive to achieve, and what I strive to achieve cannot be done without the love, joy and peace that God offers us.
Love. Love. Love. The greatest commandment and the one thing that we need to be spreading to people these days and all the days of our lives. Before we can do that though, we have to realize how much God loves us. We love because he first loved us (1 John 4:19)! And the one thing that I don’t think is mentioned as much, but should be, is the love that we have for God. Not because we should love Him, but because he is just so overwhelmingly amazing that we fall in love with him. A love that is obsessive and beautiful. A love that makes other people want to love him too. A love that turns into our actions towards other people and the way we live our lives.
Joy. Joy is not something that comes and goes like happiness. It is not something that comes when we are at our highest, but the thing we have to feed off of when we are at our lowest. It is the joy that comes from God. The joy that cannot be taken away from us! He is good, all the time. He loves us. He has a miraculous plan for our lives. He created this breathtaking universe that we live in and even through the brokenness, He gives us hope to see the light at the end of the tunnel. What is there not to be joyful about? We don’t have to be happy all the time, but we must always have joy.
Peace. When I hear this word I often refer to the movie Miss Congeniality, because if we learned one thing from that movie it is that the answer is always “World Peace”! Peace, to me, is absolute serenity. Just that overwhelming feeling that everything is okay. Everything is good. God gives me a sense of peace that no sunset, ocean, or sleeping baby can give me. I think it is easy to see the peace that other people have inside of them; and when I see it I crave more. So why not be that person for someone else? Why not put action towards world peace?
God is the ultimate source of love, joy, and peace. He is the direction we should be looking to find these things, because He is these things. He is love. He is joy. He is peace. When He looks down at us, He is overwhelmed with love because He created us for a purpose and we are living out his mission. He looks at us and is joyful because even though we do not know how the situation we are going through will turn out, He knows the good that will come of it. He is peace, because when it comes down to it, He has already overcome the world. There will be a day when we have world peace. When the Kingdom of God breaks through the clouds and renews this world to what God knows it should be.
Friends, we have to live with love, joy, and peace hanging on our sleeves. As Christians, we are a reflection of God. We have to live in a way that people see Him through us. In a way that people want Him because they see the impact He has in our lives. We don’t have to preach about God in order for people to see Him in us. Every action we take should ultimately reflect The Kingdom inside of our hearts. When we are living with love, joy, and peace this message does not sound like a chore, but a lifeline. Something we cannot possibly live without. So let’s get to living!
Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls. - 1 Peter 1:8-9