Thursday, January 17, 2013

What’s Stealing Your Joy

It doesn’t matter what you have, somebody else would like to have it instead of you. That’s the mystery behind flea markets and garage sales. It’s also the driving force behind theft. Stealers don’t care what it means to you or what it would cost you to replace it, they just want what you have.

Joy Stealers come in various shapes and disguises. They can look just like your best friend, your spouse, your kids, your boss. They can expose themselves through words like: you have cancer, I want a divorce, there’s been an accident. They can linger after words are spoken, deeds are done and wounds are scarred over.

Joy Stealers catch us when we are the most vulnerable—in between a spiritual high and low, during a drought of prayer and Bible reading, when we’ve taken a vacation from seeking God. They sneak in when we are momentarily distracted. But they also show up in the middle of something good.

Most thieves do their work at night or whenever they think they are least likely to get detected. Joy Stealers gain entrance by a whisper, a look or a silent response. In some way a lie was introduced, some suggestion that degraded our sense of God at work in our lives, and we thought about it. As we thought, it began to consume more and more of our attention until it became more real than God is to us, bigger than He is, more powerful than His power.

Watch for these Joy Stealers:

  • Negative people
  • Misguided friends
  • Non-spiritually-minded advisors
  • Faithless observers
  • Downward thoughts
Jesus said, “A strong man, well armed can protect his household, but if he allows in a stronger influence, he can be ransacked.”

We may not be able to completely avoid the Joy Stealers, but we don’t have to give in to their tricks.

Question: What are some Joy Stealers you’ve run into in your life? Comments?

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