Weekly Devotional

Joy

John 16:4-24
https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+16%3A4-24&version=NRSV

“So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice,
and no one will take your joy from you.” (vs. 22)

     I love verse 22 of John 16. “No one will take your joy from you.” I feel like I need to write this again. What a remarkable promise from Jesus “no one will take your joy from you.” Jesus says things are going to hard. Jesus tells his followers he is going away. He tells them life will be hard and they should expect to be hard. He also tells them that he will provide them with such joy that not only will their hearts rejoice but it is a joy that can never be taken from them. 

    Have you experienced this? Have you experienced eternal joy? Or have you experienced joy as temporary and related to circumstances? Do you associate joy in the days where nothing is going right? Do you associate joy with trials and temptations and failures? Do you associate joy with illnesses and struggles and anger? Usually we do not. Usually we are tempted in such circumstances to feel joyless. But joy is not a mere emotion or human feeling. Joy is a gift and a promise from Jesus. Jesus tells his disciples “I will see you again.” He is telling them I will die and I will rise again. He is telling them I am going to conquer sin and death. I am going to redeem all of creation. And when you see God’s redemption plan unfold before your eyes and you experience it your hearts will rejoice and you will be filled with a joy that cannot be taken from you. 

    Do you trust and believe and know with all that you are that Jesus died and rose again? Do you trust and believe and know with all that you are that you are forgiven and loved? Do you trust and believe and know with all that you are that you are redeemed and living in the kingdom of God? If so, then you have the gift of joy. Joy is yours. No one can it from you. No circumstance can change your condition. Your condition is the condition of redeemed and joyous. Circumstances may be trying. People may be difficult. Temptation will come as we live both in God’s kingdom and in the world. Yet our condition, your condition, remains the same. Joy is yours. Satan cannot take it from you. Your enemy cannot take it from you. You can even pour joy out and share it with others and never run out of it. Your joy comes from Jesus and Jesus has staying power. 

    You have been given the gift of joy. Live into today. Delight in it. In your waking, coming and going, and sleeping enjoy the gift of eternal joy and rejoice in the giver of this gift. 


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