How do you find face-to-face Joy? In today’s post, I will show you how.
Face-to-face Joy, or what I call Facetime Joy is found in your connection with Jesus. You can watch the video here.
Are you passionate like I was to find the way into the Lord’s presence? But, even if you’re only just slightly curious, that is enough to stay with me on this journey. So let’s get going.
In episodes 1 & 2 (Read Episode 1 here if you missed it) I told you that Joy is a feeling which is the response to someone who is happy to see you or be with you. I also told you that the feeling of Joy is experienced in the right hemisphere of your brain. The right side of the amazing creation of your brain is where you feel emotions, as well as seeing and visualizing. It’s where you daydream. It’s the part of your brain used as you create. It is said to hold your intuition and imagination.
You can watch the video here:
Face-to-Face Joy Through Meditation and Visualization
If you want to enter into Joy of the Lord, if you want to find the key to unlock sustainable joy, you need to use the part of your brain that God created to encounter Him. This is not found in memorizing scripture alone but is found in the meditation of that scripture, the visualization of what you read and its impact on you.
Let this set you free from limiting the God-given ability to see and hear him in order to Practice His Presence. Your imagination has been sanctified when you were made a new creation. Right now, because of your relationship with Jesus and all that he did for you, you are currently seated in Heavenly Places and therefore you are able to experience Heavenly things.
A John 4 Encounter with Jesus
Let’s practice experiencing God through scripture. Have you ever immersed yourself in a scene from scripture? For example, when Jesus interacted with the Samaritan woman at the well. Have you ever placed yourself at the well instead? Why not try it?
This is a good way to warm up your imagination. After this post, please read John 4:1-42. As you do, allow yourself to picture the scene in your own mind. Let it play out in your imagination. See Jesus, observe His face and expression. Is He happy to see you? How is He dressed? I’ve noticed that since I’ve been watching The Chosen, I see those scenes more easily in my mind. And I often see that version of Jesus. Personally, I feel that it’s OK to imagine Jesus however you want because none of us were alive then and we don’t have a credible memory to rely on. So seeing Jesus with the face of The Chosen actor, or the face of one of the magnificent Jesus paintings of Leonardo de Vinci or Akiane is perfectly legal.
It’s OK to picture Jesus any way you want.
Many of you are enjoying The Chosen show. How do you think those scenes were recreated. How about the dialogue? That’s a great example of using your sanctified imagination to encounter Jesus. The show has done a lot of the work of imagining for us. But it’s a great way to begin to practice hearing his voice.
The Conversation with Face-to-Face Joy
Back to John 4. See yourself as the Samaritan woman. Notice how you are dressed. What is the time of day? Is it hot? Dry? Are you thirsty?
How do you feel being addressed by this Jewish man? How would you respond? What are some of the feelings you have at that moment?
Now read this passage again and sit with it when you’re reading. Let a spontaneous flow of thoughts begin. Write them down in your journal. Ask simple questions of Jesus. My favorite is: “Jesus, what do you want me to know about this?”
Record your answer.
The first thing I’d like you to recognize is the feelings you are feeling because of the simplicity of the connection?
How do you feel about having this conversation with Jesus so far?
I’m guessing that JOY is beginning to percolate up inside of you as you discover how easy it is to meet with Jesus in a way that you initiated? Isn’t it amazing?
Are you willing to stay engaged with HIM at the well? If so, ask Him again, “Jesus, what do you want me to know about this?
An Important Clue
But here’s an important clue for you: If you will assume that Jesus is eager to meet with you whenever you want to meet, then he’s eager to speak too. I have found that usually, his voice is the first thought that comes to my mind. Don’t wait for an outside voice. He sounds like you. He has been sharing thoughts with you since you were a little girl. Lots of your ideas have actually been His. So don’t rule out the first easy-flowing thoughts that come when you ask HIM what he wants you to know. He wants you to know the answer!
How do you judge if you’re hearing HIS voice and not your own thoughts? When you gave your heart to Jesus, at that moment you became a new creation. You are already seated in heavenly places and His thoughts are now your thoughts. As you grow in the knowledge of God and surrender to His purpose for your life, you will recognize his voice. The measure to determine if you’re hearing God’s voice is to measure it against scripture. Is it something Jesus would say? Is it in line with His character?
Thoughts like “You’re stupid, you’re not good enough, you’re never going to hear his voice” do not line up with the word of God.
You Are Created to Hear His Voice
Do you know the scripture in John 10? Jesus says, “My sheep know my voice and I know them and they follow Me.” He has told you that you hear Him and can respond to Him.
Then, in perhaps the most beloved Psalm of all, Psalm 23, He tells you that He leads you in the paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. How has HE been leading you? You’ve been getting the spontaneous flow of thoughts and instructions from the Lord for years!
As I’ve told you in the previous episodes, JOY is a feeling that you feel when someone is happy to see you. What you felt when Jesus was happy to talk with you was in fact JOY! I just showed you how easy it is to get in his presence.
Will you practice this process? Read John 4, put on some favorite instrumental music (I call it soaking music), grab a journal, and have your conversation with Jesus. Don’t rush it. Give yourself time.
Facetime Meeting with Jesus
If this process was difficult for you, don’t fear – you’re not alone. Like me, you may have been taught that mediation is wrong, yet God invites us into a living and active relationship and friendship with Him. But, I can help you encounter the True, and Living Jesus to bring you Face-to-Face Joy! Book your own Heart Healing Encounter with Jesus Session with me. Then, you will meet Jesus and experience Face-to-Face Joy with the One who knows you and loves you and has so much to tell you, His friend.
Please share about your experience and If you have questions, I’ll try my best to answer.
Be sure to read my next post as I’ll tell you about the Peace that follows Joy.
Until then, may you now experience this key to unlock sustainable Joy on Your Kingdom Journey!
Joy in His Presence
Watch the video of this episode, Joy of Presence on my YouTube channel Your Kingdom Journey
Do you want sustainable joy? Sustainable Joy is relational. Joy is the feeling that comes when someone is happy to be with you. Today I’ll show you how to experience real Joy with the ONE who is truly happy to be with you, Jesus. You will discover the Joy of His Presence! Here’s the video you can watch Watch the Video Here
In my last post, I shared the intimate cry of my heart that came as I meditated on Psalm 91. I literally didn’t know how to enter the Secret Place. I didn’t know what was meant by “He, or she who dwells in the Secret Place.” I wanted to benefit from the promises found in this amazing Psalm. Eventually, I “found the way in” and when I did, guess what I discovered? JOY was there too. So, I can safely say that entering in the Presence of God is the key to finding JOY.
But is it sustainable? Is it something you can choose to initiate rather than begging the Lord to invade your space to encounter you? Yes, you can enter His Presence anytime you want.
Joy is Found in The Presence
Joy is found in The Presence. Do you know there is no Hebrew word for “Presence” as in the Presence of the Lord? The most common Hebrew term for “presence” is panim which is also translated as “face,” implying a close and personal encounter with the Lord. That means His Presence is a Face-to-Face encounter with Him.
This connection to joy makes perfect sense. Let me illustrate. When you’re happy to be with someone doesn’t it usually include seeing their eyes, their smile, and the overall expression of how they feel about you?
When you run into someone you haven’t seen for a while and you call their name to be greeted with a frown, how does that make you feel?
It’s the twinkle in someone’s eye that sparks when they see you. It’s the mutual enjoyment of each other that produces joy. That’s why your own countenance and expression are key in your successful relationship. Learning to smile, even when you don’t feel like it, will change the atmosphere around you and invite joy into the room. I’ll talk more about this in a future episode.
Joy is relational. It’s a feeling you simply can’t choose. It’s a response to being with someone who is happy to see you.
Is Jesus Happy to Be With You?
What you believe about how Jesus feels about you may in fact be limiting your ability to find joy. Do you believe Jesus is happy to be with you? I’m not actually asking if you KNOW that he is, because if you’ve ever read a bible you know that. But do you believe that he is?
What do I mean? Well, if you feel like you don’t measure up, or if you feel unworthy of HIS love and acceptance for any reason, guess what that will do? It will keep you from seeking His face. When you don’t seek His face, you won’t be able to find sustainable joy! It’s that simple.
The world’s feeling of joy is usually built around things or accomplishments. And while they will bring a degree of joyful feelings through accomplishments, like getting this video edited and published, those short-lived feelings or joy won’t sustain you and will drive you with more need for accomplishments in order to feel joy, reinforcing the cycle of ‘doing’ to earn approval.
Once you have put your faith and love in Jesus there is nothing more you can do to earn his love. His love is unconditional and constant. He is always happy to be with you.
Too Hard to Believe
For some, that’s just too hard to believe. Allow me to share a few scriptures to remind you how much he loves you and how happy he is to be with you.
Consider Ephesians 3:16-21, NLT I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.
Romans 8:38-39, ESV For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Or Matthew 28:20b, NIV And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.
So if he’s always with you, if he’s happy to be with you because nothing will serrate you from his love, what’s keeping you from His Face?
You just may not know how to see him.
I’m going to tell you how, but first, I need to tell you about your brain.
Your Right Brain
I’m sure you’ll agree with me that God created your whole brain, not just the logical, reasoning part, right?
Your left brain is wonderfully made and capable of intellect, reason, logic, and verbal skills. It’s the part of your brain that you use to study and memorize scripture. It highlights linear thinking. It’s the part of your brain you relied on heavily to get through school. Much of your church activities use your left brain.
But your right brain is also beautifully and wonderfully made. That is where your creativity, imagination, and intuition are. It’s where you “see” and dream.
Guess what else is in the right brain? Feelings!
Yes, that’s right. If joy is a feeling when you are with someone who is happy to see you, then you are using the right brain. For some strange reason, the “church” has made a strong effort to discourage the right brain over the years. I remember being told that using my imagination is ‘soulish’ and not from God, that my soul is bad. I’m not sure how that ever crept in, but why would God declare the way he made us bad?
Especially when that’s our joy center!
If joy is a feeling that means the way to access joy is through our Right Brain. In my next post, I will teach you how to do that.
The Questions to Ask Yourself
But until then, will you please consider the question I asked earlier? What do you believe about how Jesus feels about you? What’s keeping you from seeing yourself worthy to be face-to-face with Him?
If you discover an answer you’d like to change, or if you want help with further exploration, consider booking a private session with me. You can choose from my offerings here: Book a Personal Session. Select a package to save up to 30%!
I hope you’ll return next week as we continue to unlock the Keys to Finding Sustainable Joy in Your Kingdom Journey!
Finding Joy may seem elusive, even to lovers of Jesus! Would you like to have Joy anytime you want? Finding Joy is easy if you know where to look. Today I’ll share part 1 of how I learned to find and live in sustainable joy!
Finding Joy is easy if you know where to look. Watch the video here.
Finding Joy is Not a Left Brain Activity
Maybe you’re like me, someone who went to every Bible study, retreat, women’s night, and church event hoping to learn so I could please the Lord and do what HE expected of me. I believed that “doing” was required to please Him, then, if He was pleased, I would feel some kind of joy, or at least, happy. Have you ever felt the same? Sure I learned a lot of scripture and I grew in knowledge, but joy, consistent joy – was missing. Both in my relationships with others and, sadly, even with Jesus.
Eventually, I discovered how to experience Real Joy and then repeat it anytime I want. Finding joy was easy and better than that, I found sustainable joy.
In Part One today I will share this with you. You might like to watch my video on my channel, Your Kingdom Journey.
Scripture Was a Source of Frustration
It begins with one of the key verses that I kept returning to over and over for many years.
Ps 16:11. You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
I love that verse but always wondered how to BE IN HIS PRESENCE so I could experience the fullness of joy.?
I’m sure you’ve had times that feel really good to talk to Him and share your burdens and worries, but have you “experienced” His Presence and can you get there whenever you want? Answering that question became quite the journey for me.
Like me, you’ve probably had times that felt like JOY. You know that “deep in our spirit warm honey sensation.” I loved that feeling, but it didn’t last very long. Then I would feel like I failed in my quest to find real joy because it left me so quickly. Isn’t it supposed to be a lifestyle? It’s a choice, right? After all, people say, “Choose Joy,” right?
What is Joy?
I think it will help us if we defined JOY. We need a roadmap to finding joy!
Brain scientists say that the simplest definition of joy is that it that feeling when you’re happy to be with someone!
That’s because joy is relational.
Like when your 3-year old granddaughter runs up to you and throws her arms around your legs. It’s that simple!
If joy is a feeling, then it can’t a choice.
I bet you experience joy when you go to church and interact with familiar friends who are happy to see you but is that same experience missing in your relationship with Jesus – on a consistent basis?
Eventually, I came to realize that all the ‘‘knowledge and behavior” activities I was doing earlier in my Christian life, you know, all the left brain stuff I did to earn his approval, never unlocked JOY with Jesus because it wasn’t relational WITH HIM.
Many of us confuse Joy with Happy. But the real joy when it comes as a result of a relationship will end in peace. Peace is the counterpart of joy. If we were flipping a coin, Joy would be ‘heads’, and peace would be the ‘tails.’
Knowing this might help you see and experience the difference between happiness and joy. You can even begin to sense peace when it comes after joy. How might knowing this affect your life?
I’ve shared this with many women who were surprised to discover that normal, healthy joy is a short-lived experience followed by peace. So look over your life and you might discover times you’ve experienced more joy than you realized you were!
Do you know you can deliberately experience the Lord’s Presence and return to joy and peace, anytime you want – even in difficult circumstances? Let’s face it we all have times when everything feels chaotic – definitely not peaceful, like when a spouse is ill, or your child is addicted to drugs, or a friend betrayed you, or the impact on all of us from Covid 19?
Because I’ve spent years pursuing the way into His Presence, I finally found the fulness of JOY, and believe me the journey was worth it.
Finding Joy in His Presence
Real joy is found in the Presence of the Lord. He is always happy to be with you! He is always ready to enjoy your company. He loves you and enjoys you!
But If real joy is found in the Lord’s Presence, how do we get into His Presence?
I’ve been on that quest even longer. I remember many years ago after reading the first verse of PS 91 which says “He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty,” and just loving all of the amazing promises in this Psalm! But, I cried out to the Lord, “I don’t know how to get into the Secret Place with you. Show me the way.”
Have you prayed that too?
I tried to get someone to teach me or show me the way. I really had no clue. I can’t tell you the number of years I spent crying out because no one could give me a practical way into the ‘Presence.’ I needed to know-how to get there!
That of course, made me feel like a failure. So I filled my time with more “God-approved activities” since I wasn’t sure I was actually experiencing him beyond an occasional tingle. And so the cycle continued.
Is anyone resonating with this?
When I finally found the way into His Presence, I was shocked to discover how easy it is.
There is JOY in His Presence and Treasures Forevermore and it’s worth every effort to discover HIM there. Stick with me on this journey so you can discover how to find sustainable joy. But in the meantime, will you please read both Ps 16 and Ps 91. As you do, ask Jesus what will it look like for you to be in His Presence. What will Joy feel like for you? How will Jesus respond? Write down your answers and if you’re willing, share them in the comments.
More Help for Finding Joy
I have helped many women process beliefs, overcome obstacles, and find the way to a joyful Kingdom living. If you’d like to explore the roadmap for Finding Joy on Your Kingdom Journey, click here to see my coaching and inner healing packages you can consider!
Please join me in future posts and videos as we continue to unlock the way to Finding Joy on Your Kingdom Journey.
Jesus uses every painful event in your life to create a Masterpiece!
Pain is the raw material that Artist Jesus uses to craft his masterpiece–YOU!
Pain hurts. After the initial pain event, hopelessness and despair creep in along with anger and bitterness to further traumatize your hurting heart. If you’re like me, the most damaging pain comes at the hands of the people we know best and love the most. Therefore, what on earth could be the possible benefit of all the pain?
What’s the Benefit of Pain?
God is not the author of pain. Satan carries that identifier all to himself as he works frantically to inflict pain, brokenness, and loneliness knowing he is defeated! In contrast, our faithful God patiently, masterfully, and tenderly weaves your pain and sorrow together to reveal the multiple values (shades of grey) to produce contrast in the masterpiece of you as He unveils His promise of Romans 8:28 fulfilled in your life!
Shades of Grey Highlight Beauty
To demonstrate, as an artist I have discovered that every beautiful painting has a balance of light and dark values. An equal balance of values is not the aim, instead to provide enough contrast to highlight the subject and elicit the mood to reveal the majesty of the artwork. Major Artists have studied the greyscale to learn to “see” every shade of grey to create depth, movement, atmosphere, and emotion in their paintings.
Here’s an interesting fact. Did you know there are over 100 shades of grey observed in nature, yet a computer can identify 256? Surprisingly, most of us can only distinguish 10, and that’s with a lot of intentional effort!
How to Jesus Sees You
How many shades of grey in your life? For example, the old art masters learned to paint in only black, white, and gray for many years in order to learn to ‘see’ every shade. Too many of us don’t see or have an understanding of the shades of grey in our life. We evaluate our circumstances in only black and white such as, “Am I happy or sad today? Am I rich or poor, fat or skinny, pretty or ugly?” When you look at your life do you only see your failures, or experience feelings of being lost, not-good-enough, unloved, alone, discounted, or stuck?
That’s not how Jesus sees you. When He looks at you, like the old art masters who observed 5 different shades of grey in the shadowed underside of a glossy green leaf, he sees each shade of your life caused by the pain and sorrow of the enemy’s attack, as a gorgeous addition to the beauty of His finished work of art. Each shade of pain combines to make a glorious, priceless masterpiece.
Dark Threads of Pain Reveal Beauty
God himself carefully selects each treasured dark thread of pain in your life to weave His glorious tapestry. These delicate strands of brokenness become the anchor for the bright lights and joyful color. The dark thread becomes the contrast making room for the colors to explode!
He promises to make all things, including the painful things, good for your life as He conforms you to reflect the image of the Master Artist, Jesus. Therefore, the next time you feel tempted to agree with hopelessness from your painful experience, remember how the Master Artist sees you–Glorious, Majestic, and full of Light! His light reflects in every shadow, every scar, and every painful memory. He will redeem every moment of your life to create a beautiful work of art–YOU!
The Shades of Grey Challenge
I challenge you to choose a painful event or time that you consider negative (only black) and begin to explore the shades of grey. Can you ‘see’ the lighter areas? Can you find even one thread of white? The purpose is to help you reframe the event and see from Heaven’s perspective to reveal the beauty it may have brought to your life. God’s promise to work all things together for our good even applies to the blackest situation. If you need help seeing the shades of grey, reach out to me. I have learned to ‘see’ very well.