With everything that’s happening around us with the pandemic, businesses closing their doors, people have lost their jobs, lost their homes, you may have lost family member or someone close and dear to your heart. How can you count it all joy when you are going through this? Anyone can count something joyful when you’re happy, and everything is going their way.

When everything is going your way, it’s easy to smile, and it’s easy to kick up your heels and say, “Glory to God, how good God is!” But, when things begin to change, your life begin to go to a downward spiral, and go contrary to the way you want them to go, sometimes it’s a little difficult to express and show joy. It’s hard to smile when you are in a storm, and crying on the inside.

But the Bible tells us to be of good cheer. God got our backs. The joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8:10) Through it all, I can stand here today to let you know that Jesus He is Lord. No matter what the enemy tried to do to us through all of this, just remember you are not defected, you’re a winner. You are an overcomer by the Blood of Jesus. God is going to come through for you, so don’t give up, don’t cave in, and differently don’t quiet.

You might be dealing with personal tragedies, fear, worry about your children and grandchildren away in college, or just concerned about people in other parts of the world. James reminds us that God intends to develop, shape you, and equip you through this crisis we are facing together.

If you can see it through the eyes of Jesus, you are blessed. You can recover everything the enemy has stolen. If you lost a home, you could get it back. If you lost a car, you could get a better car. If you lost a job, you could get it back.

Regardless of the trial you’re facing, James instructed us “to consider it pure joy”. God is asking us to just trust Him, trust His Word through this, trust Him to know that he got it. Choose to see the answer through the eyes of the Word of God, to see the end results, and see what God is doing and working things out differently than what you see in the natural. He’s asking us to see reality through the eyes of His Word. Through the eyes of Joy.  What are you focusing on? Whatever it is that’s keeping your mind occupied, with the cares of this world, let it go.

The Bible says, “but the cares of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in, choke the Word, and it becometh unfruitful. (Mark 4:19)

What happens when you pay attention to the cares of this world? The cares of this world become larger in your mind than the Word of God. When there’s not a sufficiency of God’s Word in you, not enough roots to hold out against all this “stuff” you’re taking in from the world, then the cares of the world will eventually outweigh the Word of God. They choke, block up, and stop the Word from bearing fruit and bringing results in your life.

When we begin to look at situations the way God sees them – that they are full of His presence, and in His presence is fullness of joy (Psalm 16:11) – then our anxieties lessen, our resilience increases, and fear gets replaced with gratitude and joy. The choice to count it all joy is yours.

James says, Consider it nothing but joy, my [a]brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing. (James 1:2–4, ESV).

What Does it Mean to Count It All Joy? 

Count it all joy does not means that you are enjoying the situation that you are in but knowing that God is going to bring you out of it quickly. Don’t be prepared to stay in that situation, be prepared to come out. A trial is not an occasion for joy. James isn’t suggesting that we pursue trials or court hardship; neither are we to pretend that trials are enjoyable to endure. Knowing there is a bigger picture, we can consider trials as things to rejoice in. Even though joy is contrary to our normal reaction, James urges us to work on changing our attitude toward troubles from dread to positive expectation, faith, trust, and even joy.

Trials and tribulations come with both a purpose and a reward. “Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. . .. Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial; for once he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life, which the Lord has promised to those who love Him” (James 1:2-4,12).

James does not merely say “count it joy,” but he says “count it all joy”; that is, we can consider trials and testing’s as pure, total joy. Too often, we see trials in a negative light, or we assume that joy cannot exist in hardship; worse, we consider the hard times as God’s curse upon us or His punishment for our sin, rather than what they really are—opportunities to joyfully mature into Christlikeness. Paul calls these things light.

2 Corinthians 4:17 Amplified Bible (AMP) For our momentary, light distress [this passing trouble] is producing for us an eternal weight of glory [a fullness] beyond all measure [surpassing all comparisons, a transcendent splendor and an endless blessedness]!

What Paul was referring to the afflictions, or persecution, that believers face because of their faith in Christ Jesus. Our affliction is light compared to what Jesus suffered for us. There is simply no comparison between what we are going through, and all Jesus suffered spiritually, emotionally, and physically – and all for us, not for Himself.

Many times, if we would just choose to rise above our difficulties and anxieties and fix our eyes on Jesus and the fullness of God’s love, our mountains, problems or anxieties will suddenly seem like insignificant molehills. 

 Remember Paul’s life. Though he had been shipwrecked, stoned, imprisoned, and had the chopping block to look forward to, He rose above His seemingly hopeless situation, fixed His eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, and used his God-given gifts and wrote half the books of the NT, which would inspire millions for centuries.

12 Peter made a statement when, he says, “Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal which is taking place to test you [that is, to test the quality of your faith], as though something strange or unusual were happening to you. 13 But insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, keep on rejoicing, so that when His glory [filled with His radiance and splendor] is revealed, you may rejoice with great joy. 1 Peter 4:12-13 (Amplified)

In other words, do not be surprised or amazed when life gets really difficult, don’t jump to conclusion that God isn’t on the job.  But insofar as you are sharing Christ’s sufferings, keep on rejoicing, so that when His glory [filled with His radiance and splendor] is revealed, you may rejoice with great joy.

What is the Bible Verse that says Count It All Joy?

 Consider it nothing but joy, my [b]brothers and sisters, whenever you fall into various trials. Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. And let endurance have its perfect result and do a thorough work, so that you may be perfect and completely developed [in your faith], lacking in nothing.               (James 1:2-4)

James is saying in this verse to don’t be weary when you fall into various tests and trials. Don’t be quick to throw in the towel. That your faith is going to be tested. but James said, “Be assured that the testing of your faith [through experience] produces endurance [leading to spiritual maturity, and inner peace]. If you can hold up under pressure, and passed the test and been approved, he will receive the [victor’s] crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. 

Jesus said, These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world (John 16:33).

This is the kind of assurance we have from Jesus when He said, “…be of good cheer; count it all joy, I have overcome the world.”  What such powerful, comforting, and uplifting words! In the midst of the trials, temptations, troubles; in the midst of the persecution and hatred, He wants you to be of good cheer, because everything is going to be all right. Never allow sadness and unhappiness in your life as a result of whatever you may be going through. You’re a victor in Christ Jesus. You are more than a conqueror in Christ Jesus.

Even when things don’t seem to be going right, be unflustered. The Word says, “Count it all joy when you go through diverse tests” (James 1:2). That challenging situation is for your promotion and testimony. You live on the mountaintop, because you’re seated together with Christ in the place of glory and dominion. Therefore, when you face distressing situations, turbulent times, you can live above them.

What is Joy in the Bible?

To operate in joy during times of trials in life it must begin with an awareness that God is already at work in our lives and that He has a tangible purpose for why we may be experiencing these trials. 

In other words, if we have put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ as our own personal savior (Romans 10:9), and if we believe that His Word teaches us that God is at work in our lives (Philippians 2:13), then we will understand and come to the conclusion that trials, suffering, and difficult times in our lives are ultimately designed by God and that He has a specific purpose for us in mind as He takes us through this.

James makes it clear when he said, “My brethren, count it all joy, when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience” (NKJV). James 1:2, 

The Bible is clear. We can respond to life’s trials with genuine joy if we know that the Lord has a purpose for why He would allow those difficult times of suffering and trials. In this verse, the purpose for trials was to produce patience or endurance (the ability to hold up under a trial) in our lives. 

What Does the Bible say About Joy in Trails?

But rejoice inasmuch as you participate in the sufferings of Christ, so that you may be overjoyed when his glory is revealed. … Consider it pure joy, my brothers, and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. 1 Peter 4:12-13

That let’s me know, that when we rejoice through the trails, and storms of life, we win!

How Do You Find Joy in the Lord?

John 15:11 where Jesus says, “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”

Jesus is referring to his own joy as being in us — not just giving us a joy, but his joy in whatever he is joyful in is in us. We are not just rejoicing over what we know about Jesus, we are rejoicing with the very joy of Jesus over what he knows about everything, especially what he knows about his Father.

In other words, “The reason your joy can now be as full as it is and moving toward perfect fullness, is because we are in union with Jesus Christ.  Now You have Jesus joy in you and you enjoy what I enjoy as your joy, as you abide

in me.”

Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. 1 John 4:17

Where does this joy come from?

You can find joy in the Lord, by asking Him to restore your Joy.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13 NIV

PSALM 51:12, Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit. (ESV)

There is a spirit of joy that was placed in you the moment you were born again; so, whether you feel like you have joy or not has nothing to do with whether joy is in you. It is there now. Just rejoice.

Joy is found in God’s presence.

PSALM 16:11, You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (ESV)

If you lack joy, take time out to spend time in God’s presence.

The Bible says, “Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and in His courts with praise. (Psalm 100:4) KJV

Consider His incredible kindness, celebrate how great and powerful God is and you will experience His joy.

Joy is His Righteousness

PSALM 97:11, Light shines on the godly, and joy on those whose hearts are right. (NLT)

ECCLESIASTES 2:26, God gives wisdom, knowledge, and joy to those who please him. (NLT)

If you can stay in joy and stay in peace, it will keep you in perfect peace.

Joy Comes when you delight yourself in the Word

PSALM 119:111, Your statutes are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart. (NIV)

I like the way The Message reads, “I inherited your book on living…”

The Bible is an inheritance from the Lord; it is better than gold, diamonds, or rubies, and it has been passed down to you. When we see the Bible as treasure we have inherited, invariably, that mindset will lead to joy.

Joy is found in prayer

JOHN 16:24, Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. (ESV)

Prayer brings joy, but you can’t have answered prayer if you don’t pray. And you won’t pray as much if you don’t have a prayer time! Making time to pray is key to making room for joy!

Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3

When we call on the Lord, He will answer us. There is so many wonderful things He want to do and show us.

Joy comes from the Holy Spirit

GALATIANS 5:22, But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy… (ESV)

GALATIANS 5:25, Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (NIV)

One measure of the Spirit’s working in your life is joy. If the Spirit is not producing joy in your life, then it’s important to consider that something in your life may, in fact, be blocking the work of the Spirit in you. Ask the Lord to identify that blockage and remove it so that His joy may flow in your heart.

Joy Comes in the Morning

For His anger endureth but a moment, and in His favor is life; weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. PSALM 30:5

The psalmist reminds us that the afflictions we face in this life are temporary. As painful as a season may be, it is only a season, scriptures say, but for a moment. There will be times of sadness and turmoil, but the sun will shine in the morning.

There will be seasons of heartaches, disappointments, and betrayals which can leave you feeling shattered, and you may wonder will it be a brighter day.  So, God reminds us that joy comes in the morning.

Verses 11 and 12 says, “You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.”

Joy Comes When We Trust the Lord

PSALM 40:4, Oh, the joys of those who trust the Lord… (NLT)

Placing our trust in God brings joy. We have a God who loves us more than can we imagine, a God who is more powerful than we can comprehend, and who has promised to help us if we put our trust in Him. Be of good cheer, God wants to help you! Remember God promised a son to Abraham. Abraham waited, and waited, and waited. During his waiting season, he experienced much grief. Sarah deeply struggled to believe that God would indeed be true to his word.

Joy Comes Through the People God Has Placed in Our Lives

PHILIPPIANS 1:3-5, I thank my God for you every time I think of you; and every time I pray for you all, I pray with joy because of the way in which you have helped me in the work of the gospel from the very first day until now. (GNT)

When you think about the people God has put in your life, who they are and what they’ve done, it brings you joy. In your prayer time, spend time thanking God for the people who have encouraged you, loved you, served with you, blessed you, and you will have joy.

Joy Comes When You Hear a Word from the Lord

Jeremiah 15:16, “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, Lord God almighty.”

Joy is both a gift of God as well as a response to the gifts of God. Joy comes when we are aware of God’s grace and relish His favor. When we hear a Word from the Lord, it changes the destiny of our lives.

Joy comes in the morning when God fulfills his good promises to us.

“I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me (Psalm 57:2)

God has a purpose for you and God will fulfill that purpose. Be revived, encouraged, comforted, God is fulfilling his purpose for you.

Through all of life’s trials and tribulations, we have the victory. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord, Jesus Christ.” Although we are in a spiritual battle, Satan has no authority over the believer in Christ. God has given us His Word to guide us, His Holy Spirit to enable us, and the privilege of coming to Him anywhere, at any time, to pray about anything.

Maintain your joy in the midst of your trials, keep praising God and show Satan you will not be moved by what he says but only by what God says. Through it all, you have the victory in Christ Jesus, so shout, God’s Glory, rejoice, and praise the Lord.  And the rest of us will know you experienced your victory because we’ll hear your shouts of “Glory!”

Related: 23 Uplifting and Powerful Bible Verses about Joy

A Prayer for Joy

“Lord Jesus, every good gift is given to us by You We Count It All Joy, because of Jesus. He fulfills every part of our lives with Joy. Thank You Jesus. Therefore, magnify Yourself in our lives. We will remember: The light of God surrounds us, the love of God enfolds us, the presence of God protects us, God is always with us. Give us the joy only You can grant, O God, and give us a willing spirit to pursue truth and goodness in our lives.

Lord, what a joy You are. Your blessings are abundant. Your faithfulness astounds me. You remain steadfast, even when I don’t — especially when the flames of trial are fierce. Change my attitude, so I can count it all joy.  Thank you for hearing my Prayer. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Free Printable Prayer Journal

 Count It All Joy

I’ve prepared this prayer journal just for you. To help you and your family grow in faith. Enjoy!

On this page, you’ll find everything you need to take you to the next level in Christ Jesus — including printable Bible Reading Plan, printable Bible Study Notes & Reflection, Study the Bible Sheet, Journal Page, and so much more! And the best part is, they’re ALL free! 

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