A Joyful Life
"Meaningless! Meaningless! Everything is Meaningless!" (Ecc. 12:8), and yes it is... without God.
But we are not without Him. You are not without Him.
How do I know that?
Because Jesus said that anyone (which includes you) can have immediate access to God. That means God's joy and presence is just within YOUR reach.
Here is what Jesus said in John 14:23,
"If anyone loves me, he or she will obey my teaching. My Father will love him or her, and we will come to him or her and make our home with him or her." (emphasis mine)
When you begin following Jesus, God doesn't wait until you get your life all figured out to come to you. Isn't that refreshing?! It's not about how good you are or how naughty or nice you are according to Jesus. Instead, God immediately comes to you to live with you. Apparently, He wants to be as close to you as He possibly can. God will bring all of Himself to wherever you are. That's what it means to have immediate access to God.
But Jesus doesn't stop there. He goes on to say what a person can experience when they have full access to God. He said,
"Remain in God's love... so that my joy may be in you and your joy may be complete." (Jn 15:10-11)
The word "remain" may be better understood as "reside" or "live". Jesus was implying this:
You are not experiencing the joy you could be because your home is not currently with me.
Jesus wanted his disciples to realize that they had access to a better home than where they were living. And he wants us to realize the same thing.
So how can we begin accessing this better home with Jesus? 1) Stop your forward motion (check, easy to do in a COVID world); 2) set aside the things distracting you (your worries, your disappointments, your virtual world- um gladly... even your successes); 3) position yourself (your mind and heart) in a new home... his home: imagine yourself in a home filled with the people you love the most giving and receiving unconditional, non-judgmental, and overflowing love that results in joy. That's where Jesus is.
And YOU can live there today.
Jesus wants your joy to be complete. But he won't force it on you... that's just not his way. He's not withholding it from you. You simply need to keep following him, asking him for his joy, and he will give it to you.
Now, get out there and let God's joy "be in you" today so that your family and neighbors can see it and experience it.
Thank you for continuing to partner with us in these trying times. You ARE so special to us and to God!