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"My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience" (James 1:2-3).

Anybody can say hallelujah when his needs are all met. Anyone can be happy when everything is going his way. When a person has an abundance of every good thing, it doesn't take much faith at all to say, "Praise God, my needs are met." It does take faith to make that confession when it looks as though he is about to lose it all!

James tells us to count it all joy when we fall into divers temptations. That's when we are to be joyful, at the very moment we are beset by temptations, testings and trials. Why then? Because that is when the force of joy is most needed - and most productive.

As Christians we ought to be full of joy all the time. But joy really pays off most when we are under pressure. Because that's when it has the greatest opportunity and challenge to go to work on our behalf.

I heard about a fellow who carries $3,000 around in his pocket all the time. Someone once asked him why he carried so much cash with him. His reply was, "So if I ever need it, I'll have it." That makes sense, doesn't it? That's the only reason any of us ever carry any amount of money - so we'll have it when we need it. That's one of the reasons we need to learn to stay full of joy - so we'll have it when we need it.

That fellow may never need that much money at one time, but if he ever does, it's going to be great to have it. It's also great to know that you have a plentiful supply of joy on hand for any emergency that might present itself in life.

Sooner or later, pressure will come. When people get under pressure, that's when they reveal what they are full of: Doubt. Unbelief. Anger. Hostility Resentment. Fear. Whatever a person is full of will be revealed when the pressure comes. That's another reason we need to stay full of the joy of the Lord. To assure that what comes out under pressure is "the right stuff." Without a real sense of joy deep down in our spirit, our faith will not stand up under pressure. Because joy is the thrust of faith. Joy is "faith fuel."

Many people have become dependent upon their faith only to find out that it isn't nearly as developed as they thought it was because they have never developed the other forces of life. That's why their faith confessions fall to the ground right in front of them, because they haven't invested the time and effort necessary to develop the forces that cause faith to work.

The Strength of Combined Forces
Remember that these forces work together. You are never going to get anywhere trying to develop just one force of life. It is impossible to take one force and "super-develop" it. When these forces are working together in harmony, all the demons of hell cannot stop you.

When you have all nine of these powerful spiritual forces working for you, it is as though you are surrounded by a protective shield that cannot be penetrated. Not by Satan or his demons. Not by sickness or disease. Not by failure or defeat or anything else. The forces of life build a hedge around you that will repel every attack of the enemy.

If the Church of Jesus Christ could ever release the joy on the inside of each individual believer, nothing would be impossible to us.

Heaven is full of joy and praise. The Bible says that there are thousands upon thousands of angels surrounding the throne of God. Their sole duty and function is to continually cry out: "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty!" Never in all of history has God ordered the angelic hosts to hush. God loves praise.

All this continual praise of the Almighty is what irritated the archangel Lucifer so much. He was jealous. He wanted all that praise and glory to go to him, not to God. That's why he led one third of the heavenly host in a rebellion against the Most High. As a result, he and his followers were cast out of heaven and down to the earth where they have been causing trouble ever since.

The fall of man was not the beginning of conflict in the universe - it was only the result of it. The conflict began in the spiritual realm, in heaven. And it began because one creature coveted the praise and glory that rightfully belongs exclusively to the Creator.

So now Lucifer (Satan) plans and plots and schemes against God. Since he cannot attack God directly, he comes against His highest and most cherished creation, man. Satan comes to kill and steal and destroy us because we are made in the image and likeness of our Father. Our adversary does everything he can to wipe us off the face of this planet.

Day and night he works to overthrow God by overthrowing us, God's children. Because Satan hates God so much, he hates you and me and everything we stand for. But when he launches his attacks against us, all we have to do is stand firm and shout, "Hallelujah!" (Praise the Lord!)

Praise drives Satan up the wall. It immobilizes him. It paralyzes him. It throws him into confusion. That is not the way he wants us to respond. He wants us to cry out in anguish and doubt, "Oh my God, I can't stand it! Oh, Lord, why is this happening to me?" That is the kind of response our enemy wants from us. Terror. Defeat. Oppression. Depression. He wants to hear us weeping and wailing and crying "bloody murder," because then he has the legal right to commit "bloody murder"!

Satan knows a secret we Christians need to learn. He knows that what we decree with our mouth, we commission to occur. Since we have dominion over the earth, by our negative words we grant our worst enemy the power and authority to bring about our own destruction. That's why what we say is so important; why we need to control our tongue. As the Word of God warns us: Death and life are in the power of the tongue... (Prov. 18:21). That's also why we need a ready supply of the forces of life - especially the force of joy.

The Bible says to count it all joy when we come under pressure. When we Christians finally learn to put our faith where our mouth is and unleash the power that is resident within us, that's when we will begin to cast Satan out of our kingdom just as God cast him out of His!

Laughing in the Face of Defeat
At destruction and famine thou shalt laugh ...(Job 5:22).

In His Word, God says that we should laugh at destruction and famine. In Psalm 2:4 David wrote: He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them (the heathen) in derision.

Why are we Christians so frightened and intimidated by Satan? God certainly isn't. Psalm 37:13 tells us: The Lord shall laugh at him: for he seeth that his day is coming.

If God laughs at Satan's puny efforts to dislodge Him from His throne on high, why do we Christians allow the threats and blustering of this defeated foe to create within us an attitude of fear and failure? Especially when we understand that the only way Satan can defeat us is by deceiving or bluffing us into giving him the upper hand by our negative, defeatist words?

God is not affected by the devil's little tricks. Why should we be? Don't we remember that greater is He who is in us than he who is in the world? (1 John 4:4). God didn't give us that scripture just for a Full-Gospel cliche. That knowledge was not revealed to the Apostle John just so we Christians would have something to sing and confess. God inspired John to make that statement because it is true! Greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world! Remember that fact next time you face adversity or trial or tribulation in your life!

Count it all joy when you fall into divers temptations! As strange as it may seem, as hard as it may be to believe - it is a laughing matter! God has said so, and God doesn't lie.

Count it all joy. Count everything joy, because joy is a force. And it is that force of joy that is your key to victory.

Source: The Force of Joy by Jerry Savelle
Excerpt permission granted by Jerry Savelle Publications

Author Biography

Jerry Savelle
Web site: Jerry Savelle Ministries International
Dr. Jerry Savelle was an average, blue-collar man who was struggling and needed God's help. While he considered himself a "nobody," when he became a believer God told him not to worry about it because He was a master at making champions out of nobodies. God has since taken Dr. Savelle from being a constant quitter to a man who knows how to stand on the Word of God until victory is experienced. Because of the life-changing combination of God's faithfulness and Dr. Savelle's "no quit" attitude, his life is totally different than it was thirty-eight years ago.

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