Many studies have been done to find the secret of joy. The most common denominator that researchers found for people who report being joyful is gratitude or thankfulness.
Right now, with all that we are facing and going through in our world and personal lives it can feel incredibly difficult or nearly impossible to be joyful. Joy seems elusive. Joy can seem non-existent these days.
But for those of us who believe in God, there is a source of joy and joyfulness that never runs out. Because ultimately joy is not found in circumstances or feelings, but in our God.
This is why in Philippians the apostle Paul speaks about joy so much despite being in difficult and painful circumstances. In fact in Philippians 4:12-13, Paul writes, "I have experienced times of need and times of abundance. In any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of contentment, whether I go satisfied or hungry, have plenty or nothing. I am able to do all things through the one who strengthens me." Philippians 4:12-13 NET
Paul's source of contentment and joy in any and all circumstances was the power of God strengthening him.
One way for us to practice thankfulness and rooting our joy in our God is by reading the Psalms.
Psalm 9 says, "I will thank the Lord with all my heart! I will tell about all your amazing deeds! I will be happy and rejoice in you! I will sing praises to you, O sovereign One!" Psalm 9:1-2 NET
Our happiness is found in what God has done for us. Our rejoicing is found in who our God is.
There will be painful moments. There will be heavy days. There will be times where our hearts are breaking and heavy. But we have a permanent joy that cannot be stolen because our joy is rooted in who our God is and what he has done for us in Jesus.
Because God's love for us is perfect and because our God never changes we have the ability to have joy and contentment in any and all circumstances.