You look at this picture, you read the text, you go from one layer to the other and you think to yourself: ‘Something is missing! Where is… JOY?’
Bliss can make us feel heavenly… for a while!
Delight provides a feeling of pleasure in something or someone.
Happiness is a more pervasive, deeper, state leading us to think that life is good and the world a good place to be.
Contentment makes us experience some kind of ease, of gratification, about the situation we find ourselves in.
Satisfaction provides a sensation that things are all right, it calls for some kind of suspension of effort for some time.
But what about JOY? It is very much the theme of this Sunday as we hear the words of the prophet Zephaniah (3:14-18) and the apostle Paul (Ph.4:4-7). Both tell us to « REJOICE », and they stress this message. Paul admits: « I repeat. » What they tell us is to « rejoice in the Lord. »
What does it mean? I wonder: ‘What is asked of me?’ Perhaps the answer lies in the reason why we should rejoice and it is mentioned clearly: « The Lord is near. » So, we are expected to rejoice because we have nothing to fear, the Lord is in our midst, and Zephaniah promises us: « He will renew you with his love. » Nothing less – is it not enough to be filled with joy?