One of the words I received for this year is the word JOY.
I wanted to know what the Hebrew word for Joy is so I of course Goggled it and this is what I found.
Hebrew has several words for joy, each with different shades of meaning.

‘Simcha’ (ch is a soft gutteral, between h and the ch of ‘Bach’) means happiness in the most full sense.
‘Gila’ is a stronger sensation of joy but more transient and worldly (related to ‘gal’ = wave.)
‘rina’ is a joy related to singing and shouting.
‘ditza’ is joy related to dancing.
‘hanaah’ enjoyment (of something specific.)

When I saw the word Simcha, I was reminded that in 1983, we had decided to name our baby Simcha (Joy) if He, had been a, She. At the time, we had decided to have our baby at home. God was with us and to our delight, we had another son. That made number three. We named him Abram. God had spoken to our hearts; he was sending us a bundle of JOY! We thought for sure we would have a girl. God knew best, and to our delight, Abram was born and what a joy he has been. He is extremely intelligent and bright with a wonderful sense of humor. We love him dearly.
God wants His children to be happy and to be full of His JOY! That has been a challenge for me. I mean I can be funny and witty…but Joy has been difficult for me because I miss being around my family on a daily basis. I had to change my focus from what I want, to what God wants.
His happiness is not in things. I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with “stuff” but it doesn’t give lasting happiness or joy.
Our Joy must come from the Lord! The Lord’s Joy is our strength. He wants our Joy to be full. And we can only have full Joy when we keep our eyes and focused on Him. Then when we go through trials, our trust will be in Him and we will still be full of His Joy. Joy is strength under pressure. It is His Joy that is holding us up like steel.
I will be focusing on His Joy this year. He knows what we need and He gives us what we need. Not necessarily what we want.
When our desires, become God’s desires, we will be full of His Joy!
God is a loving parent and He knows exactly what is good for us and what is not, good, for us. We can walk away from Him, and do what we want, but I can promise you, we will fall straight on our faces. We will scrape our knees, bloody our noses, get two black eyes and scream, “Why God? Why?” We are, so, very foolish as humans. If we are His child, than obedience to Him is the best way to go, every time. Stop and think about it for a moment…what are you dreaming about? What are you wishing for? What is it that’s in your life right now that makes you stressed, unhappy, burdened, what is keeping you from having JOY?
If you focus on that…you will never have what it is you are longing for.
But if you will focus on Jesus…and ask Him what it is He wants for your life…then, do, what he shows you to do. You will see everything turn around for you and before you know it you will be full of Joy!!
~Marla Shaw O’Neill January 10, 2018
John 15:11-15 The Message (MSG)
“I’ve told you these things for a purpose: that my joy might be your joy, and your joy wholly mature. This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends. You are my friends when you do the things I command you. I’m no longer calling you servants because servants don’t understand what their master is thinking and planning. No, I’ve named you friends because I’ve let you in on everything I’ve heard from the Father.
Proverbs 12:20 “Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil, But counselors of peace have joy.”
Proverbs 21:15 “It is a joy for the just to do justice, But destruction will come to the workers of iniquity.”
Ecclesiastes 2:26 “For God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to a man who is good in His sight; but to the sinner He gives the work of gathering and collecting, that he may give to him who is good before God. This also is vanity and grasping for the wind.”
I love the Lord Jesus Christ and am passionate about writing. I hope you enjoy the blog and come to visit often. Then the Lord answered me and said: “Write the vision And make it plain on tablets, That he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time; But at the end it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; Because it will surely come, It will not tarry. “Behold the proud, His soul is not upright in him; But the just shall live by his faith. Habakkuk 2: 2-4


  1. Thank you for this meditation. Joy is something that is so vital in our lives, but it often eludes us. I always thought that the passage “The joy of the Lord is my strength” referred to my joy, me being joyful in the Lord. But then I listened to a sermon some years ago that opened up my understanding, and I realized that God’s joy is my strength. When my life, my desires and actions are focused on giving God joy, then I become strong. Whatever our experience, through it we can respond in a way that bring joy to the heart of our heavenly Father. Amén Marla, I find your writing very helpful and inspiring.

    1. Oh Mary Shogreen thank you so much. I hear your heart your words and you are so right about giving God joy…it’s like a wellspring…that never runs dry…He gives to us, we give back to him and it goes on and on…as long as we don’t let anything clog the flow…:) Thank you so much for your words, your love and your friendship! You mean so much to me!! <3

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