Welcome to Week 7 of the Summer Family Fruit Challenge! This week we are learning about JOY! Below you will find a short devotional to read with your kids, a link to download Bible memory cards, and links to fun songs and activities that will help you teach your child about the Fruit of the Spirit.
A DEVOTION ABOUT JOY
The Bible talks a lot about joy. As Christians, we are told to be joyful always and to rejoice in everything.
But what does this mean? Are we supposed to walk around with a big goofy smile pasted on our face? Are we supposed to pretend we’re happy all the time, even when bad things happen?
No, true joy is so much more than happiness.
God has given us many gifts here on earth for us to enjoy but they aren’t meant to satisfy us completely.
A bike, ice cream, good grades or your favorite candy might make you happy. But what happens when things don’t turn out the way you had hoped? What happens when you don’t get what you wanted?
According to the Bible, our everlasting joy comes from God. The Holy Spirit inside us is our source of joy and He never ends. Other things may pass away but He does not.
Does this mean you have to be happy all the time? No, because happiness is a feeling, and feelings come and go. But joy is more than a feeling. Joy is the Holy Spirit in our hearts.
Let’s take a look at an example from the Bible.
Read Acts 13:42-52.
What is happening in this passage. What are the followers of Jesus experiencing?
What does Paul say they are feeling in the midst of these hard circumstances? Read vs 52.
What does Paul say they are filled with other than joy? Read verse 52.
What person is mentioned in these two passages of Galatians 5:22-23 and Acts 13:52?
The Holy Spirit filled the disciples with joy, despite their difficult circumstances. The Spirit is the source of our joy as well.
When you come to know Jesus Christ as your Savior, you are filled with the Holy Spirit. The evidence or fruit of the Spirit inside us is joy!
As you see in Acts we can have joy even in the difficult moments of life.
Please don’t miss this — Everlasting joy can only be found in God’s presence. We can find joy and happiness in life but it’s only through Him that we find never-ending joy. All the other things that bring us joy fade away but His joy is never taken from us.
“You make known to me the path of life; you will fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.” Psalm 16:11
BIBLE VERSES ABOUT JOY
John 15:10-11 (NLT)
“When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!”
Psalm 16:11 (ESV)
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
Philippians 4:4-5 (NLT)
“Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.”
Psalm 5:11 (NLT)
“But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread your protection over them, that all who love your name may be filled with joy.”
“Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty, yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!”
I Thessalonians 5:16-18
“Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”
Use these verse cards to help your children learn more about the Fruit of the Spirit. Read one each day and discuss what it means with your kids. Choose one verse card to memorize throughout the week. Print out the pictures of each “fruit” and display them in your home.
SONGS ABOUT JOY
KIDS’ ACTIVITIES ABOUT JOY
Let me illustrate this joy with a balloon. Have you ever tried blowing up a balloon and it just popped? I hate when that happens! Well, have you ever taken a blown up balloon and put it over a flame? You may have noticed that it popped immediately.
But what I want you to do now is to take a balloon and fill it with a tad bit of water. That water represents the Holy Spirit inside of us.
Now tie it and put the balloon over the flame, right where the water part of the balloon is.
Did you notice that the balloon didn’t pop? In the same way, our joy doesn’t disappear when we find ourselves in hard circumstances because the Holy Spirit is the source of our Joy. In His presence there is joy.
Our Family Fruit Challenge continues through the middle of August 2021! Be sure to sign up HERE to receive email updates each week when the next Family Fruit Challenge is ready for you! An email will be sent to your inbox every Monday, with a link to the new blog post for the week.
If you missed the first few weeks of the Family Fruit Challenge, you can find them here:
- Week 1 – Intro to the Fruit of the Spirit
- Week 2 – Patience
- Week 3 – Love
- Week 4 – Goodness
- Week 5 – Faithfulness
- Week 6 – Peace
Mari Hernandez Tuten is a certified life coach, speaker, Bible teacher, author and Mom to 3 boys. She has been in ministry for more than 20 years sharing God’s truth and hope by mentoring, teaching, leading workshops, and speaking at conferences and retreats for women from all over the world. Mari is a graduate of Columbia International University with a Masters degree in Christian Education and Counseling.
Her heart’s desire is to help moms find hope in God’s truth and to encourage women to use the influence God has given them to impact this generation and make an eternal difference right where they are in life. You can find Mari at http://inspiredbyfamilymag.com/. You can find her most recent devotional book on Amazon: Proverbs 31 in 5 Minutes a Day (affiliate link).