FRIDAY, JUNE 12
“So they shook the dust from their feet as a sign of rejection and went to the town of Iconium. And the believers were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.”
Acts 13:51-52 (NLT2)
FILLED WITH JOY
At a conference at a Presbyterian church in Omaha, people were given helium filled balloons and told to release them at some point in the service when they felt like expressing the joy in their hearts. Since they were Presbyterians, they weren’t free to say “Hallelujah, Praise the Lord.” All through the service balloons ascended, but when it was over 1/3 of the balloons were unreleased. For the follower of Jesus, we should be continually letting our balloon go!
When Paul and Barnabas were driven out of one city, they did not lose heart and quit. They didn’t go back home afraid and depressed. The persecution they experienced had the opposite effect. They moved to the next city “filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.” One of the clearest signs that the Spirit of God lives inside of us is joy in any circumstance.
As a 3rd century man was anticipating death, he penned these last words to a friend: “It’s a bad world, an incredibly bad world. But I have discovered in the midst of it a quiet and holy people who have learned a great secret. They have found a joy which is a thousand times better than any pleasure of our sinful life. They are despised and persecuted, but they care not. They are masters of their souls. They have overcome the world. These people are the Christians – and I am one of them.” When you are experiencing this joy…don’t forget to tell your face, smile and let your balloon go!