>> Tuesday, October 21, 2014
On Thanksgiving Sunday, our church's associate pastor didn't preach the "normal" Thanksgiving sermon. He preached instead on John 15:9-17, focusing fairly specifically on v. 11, the joy verse. At least, that's the part that caught my attention anyway...
10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.Jesus links joy here with obedience, of all things.
Just look at your kids and you KNOW obedience is generally NOT a source of joy!! (Okay, maybe yours aren't like that; look at mine then.) To be brutally honest, we can probably look in the mirror and know obedience doesn't make us happy. We hate submitting to anyone and anything other than ourselves and our own desires. Obedience is just not something we associate with joy-production.
I have been considerably joy-less for quite some time. Sure, there are reasons ~ some probably less legitimate than others ~ but the Scriptures teach us that our joy is supposed to transcend our circumstances. So then the only conclusion to come to is that my circumstances are not the problem. And what if it isn't even the attitude adjustment I've been struggling to give myself month after month that really matters either?
What if I'm lacking joy because I'm lacking obedience?