"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.... The Lord is at hand!" (Phil 4: 4-5).
See also: Joy -Fr. Rainiero Cantalamesa Joy in Luke
Joy is the fruit of the Spirit. It is not lost by afflictions
I am filled with comfort. With all our affliction, I am overjoyed. - II Corinthians 7:4, Cf Rm 5:3
Benedict XVI- The disciples of the Lord should strive to increase the joy of being Christian and the joy of belonging to the Church. The energy to serve Christ in situations that are difficult and painful is born from this joy... I exhorted all to trust in the goodness of Almighty God who can change unbearable and dark situations from within, from the heart. -April 4, 2012Joy gives meaning to life including suffering.
It comes from purity of heart.
Saint Francis, from the day of his conversion until the day of his death, always treated his body with rigor. But his primary and paramount concern has been to possess and keep forever his spiritual joy, both inside and outside. He claimed that if the servant of God would strive to possess and maintain the inner and outer spiritual joy that comes from purity of heart, the demons could not make any harm, and they would be forced to admit: "Since this servant of God retains his joy both in affliction and in prosperity, we can not find any crack through which to damage his soul. "One day, he admonished one of his companions who seemed to be sad and with a sorrowful face, "Why do you manifest in this way the sadness and sorrow that you feel for your sins? It's a matter between you and God. Ask him to give you, from His goodness, the joy of salvation (psalm 50.14). In front of me and in front of others, seek to present yourself always joyful, because it is not good that a servant of God appear in front of the brothers or other men, with a sad and sulky face." -Life of St. Francis of Assisi called "anonymous of Perugia "(XIII century). § 97
There are times when we experience deep interior sadness as Jesus did. But we ask the Lord that soon the joy of His presence will shine on our countenance.
When a brother is feeling down, we join in his sorrow but we encourage one another with love and hope.Faith gives joy in the midst of trials
Cardinal Ratzinger, Salt of the Earth;The Church at the End of the Millennium. Interview with Peter Seewald, 1996.
Faith gives joy. When God is not there, the world becomes desolate, and everything becomes boring, and everything is completely unsatisfactory. It’s easy to see today how a world empty of God is also increasingly consuming itself, how it has become a wholly joyless world. The great joy comes from the fact that there is this great love, and that is the essential message of faith."
"To that extent it can be said that the basic element of Christianity is joy. Joy not in the sense of cheap fun, which can conceal desperation in the background…. Rather, it is joy in the proper sense. A joy that exists together with a difficult life and also makes this life livable."
"The history of Jesus Christ begins, according to the Gospel, with the angel saying to Mary, "Rejoice!" On the night of nativity the angels say again: We proclaim to you a great joy. And Jesus says, "I proclaim to you the good news." So the heart of the matter is always expressed in these terms: I proclaim to you a great joy, God is here, you are beloved, and this stands firm forever."
The Crib Teaches True Joy
Joy is having the beloved close to me even in suffering
The Apostle can say "gaudete" because the Lord is close to each one of us. And so this imperative in reality is an invitation to become aware of the Lord who is close to us. It is an awareness of the Lord's presence. The Apostle intends to make us sensitive to this -- hidden but very real -- presence of Christ in each one of us. The words of the Apocalypse are true for each one of us: I knock at your door, listen to me, open up to me.
This is therefore also an invitation to be aware of this presence of the Lord who knocks at my door. Do not be deaf to him, because the ears of our hearts are so full of so many noises in the world that we cannot hear this silent presence that knocks at our doors.
Joy is needed to respond to the Lord
Message of the Lord to our community
As an all loving Father, I suffer the sickness of My sons' and daughters' hearts but My greatest suffering is that they don't allow Me, the Healer of all hearts, to touch them. They seek healing in all forms except in the only One that can bring them to life. I desire for all the Mothers of the Cross to unite as one with My Mother of Sorrows to obtain graces for humanity. The salvation of many is dependent upon your RESPONSE.
My Lord how do we live Your sorrows?
... embrace all the sorrows I place in your heart with perfect peace, trust, patience and love and exteriorly reveal your gentle smile and PERFECT JOY in knowing the love of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit for you, your PERFECT JOY in knowing that We live in you and you in Us, the PERFECT JOY in knowing you have been chosen by God to aid in the salvation of many and you have responded, the PERFECT JOY of living in faith, hope and charity, the PERFECT JOY of possessing the gift of the Cross, the PERFECT JOY of knowing more intimately LOVE and becoming ONE with LOVE, the PERFECT JOY of possessing the Holy Spirit as your most treasured Companion, the PERFECT JOY of seeing yourselves transformed into a new creation in Me, the PERFECT JOY of knowing Mary and living with her as ONE HEART in My LOVE CRUCIFIED.
From a homily on the 2nd letter to the Corinthians by Saint John Chrysostom, bishop
I rejoice exceedingly in all my tribulations
Again Paul turns to speak of love, softening the harshness of his rebuke. For after convicting and reproaching them for not loving him as he had loved them, breaking away from his love and attaching themselves to troublemakers, he again takes the edge off the reproach by saying: Open your hearts to us, that is, love us. He asks for a favour which will be no burden to them but will be more profitable to the giver than to the receiver. And he did not use the word "love" but said, more appealingly: Open your hearts to us.
Who, he said, has cast us out of your minds, thrust us from your hearts? How is it that you feel constraint with us? For, since he has said earlier: You are restricted in your own affection, he now declares himself more openly and says: Open your heart to us, thus once more drawing them to him. For nothing so much wins love as the knowledge that one’s lover desires most of all to be himself loved.
For I said before, he tells them, that you are in our hearts to die together or live together. This is love at its height, that even though in disfavour, he wishes both to die and to live with them. For you are in our hearts, not just somehow or other, but in the way I have said. It is possible to love and yet to draw back when danger threatens; but my love is not like that.
I am filled with consolation. What consolation? That which comes from you because you, being changed for the better, have consoled me by what you have done. It is natural for a lover both to complain that he is not loved in return and to fear that he may cause distress by complaining too much. Therefore, he says: I am filled with consolation, I rejoice exceedingly.
It is as if he said, I was much grieved on your account, but you have made it up for me in full measure and given me comfort; for you have not only removed the cause for any grief but filled me with a richer joy.
Then he shows the greatness of that joy by saying not only I rejoice exceedingly but also the words which follow: in all my tribulations. So great, he says, was the delight that you gave me that it was not even dimmed by so much tribulation, but overcame by its strength and keenness all those sorrows which had invaded my heart, and took away from me all awareness of them.