Acts 8:4-8
“Those who had been scattered preached the word wherever they went. Philip went down to a city in Samaria and proclaimed the Messiah there. When the crowds heard Philip and saw the signs he performed, they all paid close attention to what he said. For with shrieks, impure spirits came out of many, and many who were paralyzed or lame were healed. So there was great joy in that city.”
The church was facing persecution, and the believers were being scattered across the land. This was a time of great turmoil for those who followed Christ. Amid the scattering, Philip wound up in Samaria and God used him to perform miracles and lead people to God. Despite the turmoil and uncertainty, Philip brought joy with him. 
It’s easy to bring joy when everything is easy. When the road is smooth and there are no obstacles, it’s easy to keep a smile on my face and encourage those around me. But this kind of joy doesn’t really even require God! The joy of the Lord is a joy that persists even when things aren’t so easy.
Like Philip, I need to carry God’s joy with me. Joy that trusts God with the outcome, no matter the circumstances. Joy that points others toward God, instead of trying to draw attention to my own pity party when things get difficult. This is the kind of joy that can change the world, as I allow God to use the story of my life to bring Him glory.
This week, I choose to carry the joy of the Lord.  
God, thank you for your joy! Help me to point others back to you through every season and situation, and carry your joy with me through every circumstance. 

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