Joy is fruit. It is not something we conjure up by experiencing happy moments, fun activities or thrilling experiences. Those things last just a little longer than the experiences themselves. Joy is subterranean. It is not tied at all to the moments, experiences or activities. It thrives in spite of them.
It is a gift and fruit. As with the other fruit of the Spirit it is not something that changes with circumstances. Kind people remain kind regardless of how they are treated. Gentle people find it hard to change their nature. Loving people cannot be spiteful no matter how they are treated. And, joyful people have subterranean joy that is like a deep well that continues to bubble up cool water onto hard, hot ground.
An interesting thing about joy is that it is both a gift and something we are encouraged, even commanded, to practice. It is like priming the pump to draw water from the well that is already there and filled with an endless supply of water. It is a gift which encourages disciplined exercise. Joy is a gift from God. But, from those who possess it, it is a gift to the world around them.
How deep is my joy?
What has kept me from effusive rejoicing?
What must I do about those impediments?