It's my belief that true joy, the deep flowing from the heart type of play in the rain joy, can only be found in Christ. I've neither heard of, nor found anything even remotely close.
Now, certain times in our lives, we get a temporary glimpse of this. In fact, sin is just that, a temporary pleasure. It ruins and destroys our lives, but for the moment, it often feels good one way or another.
No, the joy I speak of, found in Christ, is joy regardless of our current situation. This joy says, "I don't care how disrespectful my husband is being" or "I will not let my unemployment steal my job" or, for a certian first century missionary, "I care not that I am in prison", together these people proclaim that their joy is in Christ!
One of the greatest growth periods in the history of the church was in the 3rd century when the Roman Empire was engulfed by the plague. The reason for growth? These followers of Christ cared nothing for their lives and their well-being, forsook all else and embraced the people facing death by this pandemic. They embraced these sick people, joyfully. It was no burden or hindrance for them to serve and love when they knew they faced almost certain death.
This joy lives in us. The joy of being forgiven and of having our names written in the book of life. The joy of knowing you are loved, cherished, and adored regardless of your social, economic, or racial status.
Do you know this joy? Deep, in your depths, joy? Or is yours some fleeting worldly treasure such as women, prestige, money or power? Come find joy.