For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope. —Romans 15:4

Saturday, November 19, 2011

I Have the Joy, Joy, Joy, Joy Down in my Heart!

John 17:13
“I am coming to you [Father] now, but I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they [Jesus’ disciples] may have the full measure of my joy within them. 

Imagine with me that you are a child walking through the forest. A fragrance wafts under your nose and you follow the scent. Before you stands a bush filled with shiny pink, plump berries, when you pluck a berry off the bush and pop it into your mouth, the flavor of fresh baked sugar cookies bursts on your tongue. Your body fills with the pure joy of a child enjoying a favorite snack that tastes so good that you want to share it with friends. Pure joy, not happiness, not greediness satisfied, but joy fills your soul.

The child did not work for the berries, nor did they buy the berries, the fruit was a gift left for them to enjoy, appreciate, and share. Jesus gave his life as the ultimate gift. No greater joy comes to mind than for Jesus to love me so much that he died for me. In John 17 he prays for his disciples and he talks to his father about the joy he wants for them. Jesus wanted his disciples to be full of his joy, and he wants us to overflow with that same joy, the joy of knowing him.  

Galatians 5:22
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

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