Chapter 3

Happiness Versus Joy

In Chapter Three, Barry warns against making anything other than God our “first love” Rev. 2:4 (NKJV). Only when God is at the center of our lives is true joy possible, which isn’t dependent upon our circumstances.

Life Application

Who or what is robbing you of your joy?

  • Can you experience joy in the midst of your trials?
  • Have you ever prayed and asked God for more joy in your life?

Scriptures for Deeper Reflection

Caving in to the cares of this world saps your strength: Proverbs 17:22 (NLT)

When things go bad, know that God is up to something: James 1:2–4 (NLT)

Most salvations and spiritual growth spurts happen when things go bad: 1 Peter 1:6–7 (NLT)

Bearing fruit (new Christians) is the key to never losing your joy: John 15:8–11 (NKJV)

Joy gives you peace in the midst of trials and sorrows: John 16:33 (NLT)

Sharing your faith leads to joy, which leads to peace, which leads to patience: James 1:3–4 (KJV)

Never let anything distract your focus on God: Revelation 2:4 (NKJV)

God always honors wholehearted faith and dependence: Proverbs 3:5–6 (NKJV)

Prayers asking for God’s will are always answered: James 4:2–3 (NKJV)

God answers your prayers when you love Him and live for Him: Romans 8:28 (NKJV)

When God is your “first love,” your desires are His desires: Psalm 37:4 (NKJV)

You would answer your prayers the same way God answers your prayers if you knew what He knows: Isaiah 55:8–9 (NIV)

If God is for you, who can be against you? 1 John 4:4 (KJV)

It’s a good thing when bad things happen: Genesis 50:20 (ESV)

Always being ready keeps your focus on God: 1 Peter 3:15 (NLT)

Videos/Articles to inspire your faith

The Search for Joy

What was the spark that ignited Barry into “full-time ministry” of sharing his faith?

Live a Life of Joy

Be sure to always connect your joy to God so they know Who your source is.

The Difference Between Happiness and Joy

Real joy can’t be manufactured or lost, no matter what trials we go through.

Jesus is Our Model

Why were so many drawn to Jesus during his time on earth? What made him so different?

Chapter 4

The End of Worry

God says “Fear Not” 365 times in the Bible—that’s one for each day of the year! The worst times in our lives are the best times to learn who God is and know we can trust Him wholeheartedly.

Life Application

What is something you are struggling with today that you know you will need wholehearted faith to overcome?

  • What are you worried about? Are you a chronic worrier?
  • How can you take a step in childlike faith and trust God no matter your circumstances?

Scriptures for Deeper Reflection

Most Christians know and quote this scripture without living it: Proverbs 3:5 (NIV)

“First love” Christians doing the “first work” are people of faith!: Hebrews 11:6 (NIV)

Fear of man is the opposite of faith in God: James 1:6–8 (NLT)

You can’t stop new believers from sharing their faith because God is their first love: John 9:25 (NIV)

From birth, God created you to be His spokesperson: Jeremiah 1:5 (NIV)

Your “walk” has to match your “talk” for your words to have power: James 5:16 (KJV)

God expects us to live without fear and to “never lift”: 1 John 4:18 (NLT)

God rewards “first love” Christians doing the first work with supernatural peace: Philippians 4:6–7 (NIV)

God loves to show off during the worst moments of our lives: 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV)

Live for God’s purpose and He’ll work all things for your good: Romans 8:28 (NKJV)

The simple truth of God’s Word sets us free from worry: John 8:32 (NLT)

Videos/Articles to inspire your faith

Whole Hearted Faith

How is increasing your faith and sharing your faith inextricably connected?

You Can Be Full of Joy Every Day

A powerful message for Christians living in fear: Sharing your faith ignites your joy!

‘Never Lift’ Off the Gas Pedal of Your Life

Race car drivers “never lift” off the gas pedal out of fear of losing the race. How can Christians do the same?

Wholehearted Trust in God

Learn how to trust God with your whole heart when you start believing Scripture. It changes everything!

Chapter 5

Where the Rubber Meets the Road

American Christians are great at believing scriptures we don’t live and ultimately misinterpret. But there’s another way. If you hunger for God’s presence in your life, you can learn to trust God and His Word with everything, no matter what the future holds.

Life Application

What is a situation you’ve experience you first believed was negative, that God used for good?

  • Is it possible for you to trust God today?
  • When the rubber meets the road, when life gets tough, does your faith waver? Why or why not?

Scriptures for Deeper Reflection

If you’re following Christ, you will move everyone, every day, closer to Him: Mark 1:17 (NASB)

No one gets mad when you tell them, “God loves you!” John 13:35 (NKJV)

It’s freedom to know God gives you the words to say: Luke 12:12 (NKJV)

It’s supernatural how God reminds you what you’ve been told to tell others: John 14:26 (NKJV)

Anger allows Satan to separate you from God: John 15:11 (NIV)

Bearing fruit (new Christians) fills your life with God’s joy: John 15:11 (NKJV)

Videos/Articles to inspire your faith

When God is Up to Something

How do you react during hard trials? Barry discusses how to find opportunities in our disappointments.

God Always Gives You the Words to Say

Satan thought he had Christine for life. But God knew her heart! Now she’s moving everyone closer to Jesus.

All Things Work Together for Good

God, not man, is our source for everything. When things go wrong, God is up to something!

Nicole Meguiar

Celebration of Life Memorial Service

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