ep. 54 | Joy with Melissa B. Kruger
On today’s episode of the Journeywomen podcast I’m chatting with Melissa Kruger about JOY! We dove right in and talked a million miles a minute about Bible study, hardship, and most of all, the joy that we have in Jesus. She said, “The object of our joy is the substance of our happiness. We like to rejoice in all these things, and we can go to God and say, ‘Thank you for my family, thank you for the fact that we have a meal to eat tonight, thank you that we have a house,” but he is the ultimate substance of our joy. The more we focus on him, the more we will be joyful!”
Melissa is definitely a kindred heart and you're going to love hearing from her! She serves as women’s ministry coordinator at Uptown Church (PCA) in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is the author of The Envy of Eve: Finding Contentment in a Covetous World (Christian Focus, 2012) and Walking with God in the Season of Motherhood (Waterbrook/Multnomah, 2015). Her husband, Mike, is the president of Reformed Theological Seminary, and they have three children. She writes at Wits End, hosted by The Gospel Coalition.
Her newest book In All Things is a study on JOY that releases tomorrow, June 5, 2018, which just so happens to also be the ONE YEAR anniversary of the Journeywomen podcast! Ya’ll, I have no words to express my surprise that we’ve actually made it this far. It is literally only by God’s grace. Thanks so much for journeying alongside me for the past year. It’s truly been a joy. I cannot wait to share this conversation on that very topic with you all!
Can you tell us about who you are and what you do?
What is joy? What are some distinctions between joy/happiness/optimism?
What might you see or experience when you're interacting with a joyful person? How about experiencing joy yourself?
Can a non-believer experience joy? If so, how? What would that look like?
How can we experience true joy? How do we pursue it? Who is the source of our joy?
What does it look like to experience joy even in the midst of difficult and hardship?
What steals our joy?
When we recognize that we've been looking for joy in things that cannot offer it, where do we go from there?
How can we, as believers, encourage one another to find our joy in the Lord?
How can we create a culture of joy in our homes? Churches? Workplaces?
How does joy fuel our ministry? Evangelism? Hospitality? Motherhood? Etc.
THREE QUESTIONS I ASK EVERY GUEST
What are 3 things you’d recommend for someone who wants to expand their joy?
What are your 3 simple joys?
Who has had the greatest impact on your own journey with Jesus?
"Christian joy is a Spirit-filled assurance of God’s grace and goodness that produces a feeling of pleasure, satisfaction, or delight. What’s different about that from [worldly joy] is the cause of the joy. It’s really important for us as believers to understand the root and substance of joy. Christian joy is rooted in our salvation."
"The word tells me that God will work all things for good."
"When people walk through tremendous suffering and you see the fruit of love, joy peace, patience, etc. coming from them that their circumstances cannot be producing, and they are not consumed by the fire they are going through, it makes you turn and look at them." - Joni Eareckson Tada (A Spectacle of Glory)
"[Joy] is a belief that Jesus is with me, an assurance that it is all for his good."
"Salvation is the abundant spring of our joy. It is a well that doesn’t go dry."
"No matter what is happening in my life, the fact that Jesus came to this earth, that he lived a perfect life, that he died in the most evil event ever to occur in human history... and then was resurrected on the third day. He left Heaven in perfection and came to this earth to rescue a people, that were his enemies, to be his children."
"We were rescued in such a way, with such grace, at such grand expense."
"This world does not work as it should work."
"There is a right place to pour out our sorrows before God. Jesus did that."
"Present joy is rooted in a past truth and future hope."
"Our wrong expectations of the Christian life can really affect our joy. The Christian life is described as a race, a war, and childbirth. A race is hopeful, a battle is hopeful that you will get to peace, and childbirth is one of the most hopeful, painful things. There can be hope while experiencing the reality that something is painful."
"Comparison is a pervasive stealer of joy."
"Believing the life that someone out there has it better than we do, can really rob our joy."
"Go to the Lord and repent. Repent and believe."
"The object of our joy is the substance of our happiness."
"He is the ultimate substance of our joy. So the more we focus on him, the more we will be joyful."
"One of the kindest, servant-hearted things someone can do is to pray for another person."
"We can think that gossip is shared intimacy but it goes sour. You leave those “one-up” conversations feeling yucky about life."
"The fight for joy begins in our mind. From our mind and heart, the mouth will speak. What am I saying to myself throughout the day?"
"When we offer one another something better, we are attracted to it."
“We become what we behold.” - Karen Hodges
"It takes daily practices to build up joy."
MELISSA'S RESOURCES FOR JOY
Being in the presence of the Creator of Joy - time in the word and prayer
“20 minutes a day for a lifetime”
MELISSA'S SIMPLE JOYS
Good fiction book
CONNECT WITH MELISSA
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Alexandra is a certified professional life coach and founder of Grace Space Christian Coaching. Alexandra personally knows how easy it can feel to be overwhelmed, alone, and at times, hopeless which led her to become a coach for women who might be feeling the same way. She works with women to uncover a deeper understanding of who they are in the Lord and how to use their gifts & dreams to honor God and serve others. Alexandra coaches over the phone, video chat, or in person if you live in Charlotte, North Carolina... so you can connect with her from wherever you are! Alexandra is extending an exclusive offer to Journeywomen listeners. When you purchase a package with Grace Space Christian Coaching, mention this promotion and you'll receive $100 off! ind her over at gracespacechristiancoaching.com to reserve your clarity call with her today! You can also find her on Instagram at @gracespacechristiancoaching.
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