Acts 16:22-32

At midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the prisoners were listening to them. Acts 16:25

If we are not careful, we can become guilty of allowing emotions to govern our lives. God instructs us to keep our focus on Jesus in order to grow spiritually. When we do this, the emotional ups and downs of this life will not shake or change our world.

In Telling Yourself the Truth, Williams Backus writes about joy:

Joy comes from your relationship to God and His unchanging faithfulness. You don’t need to live in perfect circumstances to be happy. It’s pleasant to be loved and appreciated, but not vital to your happiness.

The Bible tells how two men of God, Paul and Silas, were brought before Roman authorities at Philippi and beaten with rods and then thrown into jail . . . But did Paul and Silas moan and complain, “if it weren’t for the cruelty of the unbelievers, we wouldn’t be wounded and bleeding. We’d be happy!” No.

Paul and Silas had a strong belief that transcended circumstances, events, people, feelings; it even transcended pain. That belief was in the person, power and presence of Jesus Christ. They believed their suffering wasn’t as important as the message they carried…

They sang so loudly their their voices were heard throughout the prison! And not only that, God . . . opened the prison doors for them. Their happiness came from the belief in Jesus Christ within them and not from circumstances around them.

Keep my focus on YOU, Jesus, instead of the circumstances of my life.

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