and its my time to admit it- i confuse them all the time. i say the phrase "joy and happiness are different things" BUT if i were honest, i don't even know how to compart mentalize them myself.
so, bear with me, i write this excerpt to once and for all understand the difference of the two.
-HAPPINESS is different things to different people. it could be winning the high school championship soccer game for one person. or your wedding day for another person. tangible moments or places make us happy. think of the question- "what place makes you the happiest?" not the people, but the places (ie. camping up at Lake Almanor, traveling through Europe?)
...and then another question- "what are those ingredients that help you to be a happy person? (ie. the fact that I have food and drink on the daily, that I have a comfy full size bed, or a hot tub at my house?) "happy" is derived from the Latin base, "hap". "hap" means hap-hazard. i did not know that that.
-JOY comes from the Greek word, "makarious". you can be joyful and unhappy at the same time. JOY has to do with that smile of God living in your heart. JOY is the assurance that God is with you and in you in ALL circumstances. It is knowing that God has a plan, a purpose and a prayer for you, even when circumstances are unhappy. SO the net result is that you can be joyful during unhappy circumstances.
my purpose of writing about joy vs happiness is for the purpose of processing what hinders me from experiencing pure joy?
Oswald Chambers writes "the first thing that will hinder this joy is the subtle irritability caused by giving too much thought to our circumstances. Jesus said, '...the cares of this world...choke the world, and it becomes unfruitful' (Mark 4:19).
we must continually remind ourselves of the purpose of life. we are not destined to happiness, nor to health, but to holiness. today we have far too many interests and desires..."
Have I allowed Christ to introduce His JOY to me? Or have I allowed my circumstancial happiness fulfill that concept? If happiness is all I know, then man....I must be missing out on something big.