Joy and peace are indicators that you’re in faith! You may have a promise from God, but if you’re miserable while you’re waiting for the outcome, then you’re probably not in faith! If you really believed God at His Word then you would rejoice at His Word. Faith rejoices in the Word of God because you know that God’s Word is true, even when you don’t see it in the natural, yet. If you’re in faith your heart will be at rest and full of peace. Faith never worries because it is confident in the fact that God is faithful and His Word is true.
Philippians 4:4-8 New King James Version (NKJV)
“4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.”
You can experience joy and peace all the time – even when the circumstances are really bad! Paul wrote the book of Philippians from prison and he’s encouraging the reader to “rejoice always!” You cannot experience peace and joy when you’re focused on your problems; another way of saying that is that you cannot be in faith while focusing on all your problems. Faith will see the problems and focus on the promises, knowing that the problems are subject to change but the promise is secure! If we want to live by faith we need to continually be filling ourselves with the Word (Romans 10:17) and focusing on the promises – which are true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous and praiseworthy!
James 2:17 English Standard Version (ESV)
“17 So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”
James 2:17 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)
“17 It is the same with faith. If it is just faith and nothing more—if it doesn’t do anything—it is dead.”
Another indicator of Faith is boldness and action! If you see someone acting on what they say they believe, then it’s probable that there is faith present! If you really believe something in your heart it should lead to action. We do have to be wise here though because a lot of people seem to be acting in faith when they are actually just acting. They aren’t operating in faith; they’re operating in presumption and presumption is not a fruit or gift of the Spirit! So, how do we know if we are in faith or in presumption? Well, is the action flowing from a heart that is convinced of God’s goodness and the promises in His Word? Or is it based on something you once heard, somewhere? It’s not just about action but confidence or boldness, too. Faith is bold while presumption appears to be bold while being full of fear and uncertainty.
Hebrews 4:16 King James Version (KJV)
“16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”
Hebrews 10:19 King James Version (KJV)
“19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus”
Faith causes us to approach God (action) with boldness and confidence expecting to receive exactly what we need from Him.
If you don’t have joy, peace or boldness with action then I encourage you to get into the Word. Faith comes by hearing about Jesus and what He has done for you and freely offers you (Romans 10:17). As you meditate on God’s promises and allow them to take root in your heart, faith will rise up within you and you will start experiencing joy concerning the promises, peace because you know that “it is finished” and it will result in a confident appropriate action.