Q. I have placed my faith in the saving power of Jesus’ sacrifice and therefore I am standing on the promises found in Scripture regarding salvation. However, I am troubled by my inability to find joy in life. I am amazed by persons at church who always seem so happy … who walk around with perpetual smiles on their faces. I know that we live in a sinful and imperfect world that is full of trials … just watching the way people (even professing Christians) treat each other wears me down. I LONG for the rapture or even my own death (though not enough to take an active part in producing it). What am I missing?
A. I suggest that you undertake a study of Paul’s Letter to the Philippians, the theme of which is joy through suffering. By doing so, you’ll discover that joy and happiness are two different things. It sounds like you’re lacking in both right now, but learning to restore your joy will help you experience some happiness, too. Chapter 4 will be especially helpful, but don’t skip over the first three to get to it.