Joy is Better Than Happiness
The terms joy and happiness are often viewed as synonyms. I think this happens because we view both as a positive emotion that makes you feel good.
The book of Philippians Chapter 1 seems to indicate something quite different for those two terms. Happiness as a feeling is not necessarily based on something being good for you! I love chocolate. Eating it really does create a sense of enjoyment and happiness. I also have a physical reaction to chocolate that when I do partake I also get a terrible headache. In that sense joy supersedes happiness when I refuse the chocolate and do not suffer the headache.
I think where happiness tends to find itself through self-satisfaction, joy reveals itself through self-discipline.
The Hebrew writer says, “All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards is yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” Hebrews 12:11
Happiness tends to be fleeting. Remember that new car – house – or the latest technical marvel you purchased?
In contrast joy positions the heart for steadfastness. It builds upon itself and does not shrink with time or challenge.
Cherish the happy times but realize they will eventually pass. Allow joy to pave the way to a fruitful and steadfast life!