Joy Is A Verb

Do you ever feel like joy’s about to burst from every part of you? That was me this past weekend. Four days with nearly 700 women following the passions of their heart for God at She Speaks–that will bring up some serious joy no matter how you show up!

Now that I’m back, it’s a big joy-week for the family, too. Some birthdays, a new house for both my sister and brother and their families. This is us, celebrating last night. Can I just say how much joy they bring to my heart? This sister and brother of mine?

It’s easy to be joyful when life is great. I have to say that most mornings as a mom with some wild kiddos, that kind of heart-bursting joy isn’t always there. In fact, sometimes I feel like I missed the joy train.

As I read this morning I noticed something new about joy… something that changes everything about how I see it.

“Shout to the LORD, all the earth; break out in praise and sing for joy!” – Psalm 98:4

The word “joy” here (ranan in the Hebrew) means “to be overcome, to shout out exultantly–in wisdom.”

It’s not a feeling at all. It’s an action. A choice.

Thing is, that kind of joy is right there, available…. right now. Whenever we choose to act. Because JOY – this exultant explosion of hope-filled life-giving goodness – is a verb. We DO joy, friends. We step out into it, practice it, give it away, and bring it with us everywhere we go.

We do it because we know (there’s that wisdom piece) in whom we have joy. That in God, our joy is complete. No matter if the kids are going nuts, life is stressful, bills pile up, or your husband forgot to pick up his socks, again.

I don’t know about you, but that’s the kind of joy I want (and not just because it’s semi-in-my-control :). Let’s DO some joy today!


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  1. MotheringFromScratch says

    {Melinda} Yes! Joy is absolutely a choice. One that we can’t make without the power of the Holy Spirit! Life, without His help, can suck the joy right of us! He must be working overtime in you, Laurie, because you exude JOY!

    • says

      It’s so true – without Him we can’t even hope for joy. And I’m definitely glad He’s working overtime in me. I need it! On a totally different note, it was so much fun to spend time with you at She Speaks! What a treat to get a whole mealtime together.