A Thankful Heart is a Joy-Filled Heart
“These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you,
and that your joy might be full.” John 15:11
Did you know that a Christian without joy is a contradiction in terms? If you are right with God, you ought to have joy in your life! But there are many Christians who live as if they have lost their joy.
Why Is Joy Important?
One of the most important reasons joy is important is to win the lost to Jesus. You can’t go around with a Bible under one arm and a tombstone under the other saying, “Don’t you want to be like I am?” Our best advertisement is the joy of the Lord.
You also need joy in order to have the strength to live the Christian life. God said to Nehemiah when he was building the walls around Jerusalem and the people were getting tired, “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10). You can’t live the Christian life without joy.
Joy is also essential in order to bear life’s burdens. We all have heartaches and difficulties, but joy is the lubricant of life. The joy of the Lord will remove the burdens from your heart.
What Is Joy?
We’re not just to have joy like His; we are to have His joy. What was this joy Jesus had and wanted us to have?
First, He had an abounding joy. He said, “…that your joy might be full.” His joy was not half-hearted joy, but it was joy that was abounding and supernatural.
Not only an abounding joy, but Jesus also had an abundant joy. Abounding speaks of the quality of the joy, and abundant speaks of the amount of joy. Even through His tears and even through His agony, His was an abundant joy.
And He had an abiding joy. He said, “… that My joy might remain in you …” It was not joy that came and went. Jesus taught us this lesson about joy as He faced dark Calvary. We too are to have joy regardless of the circumstances. We’re to rejoice in the Lord always.
How to Have Joy
Jesus Himself tells us how to have this kind of joy. In verse eleven, He said, “These things have I spoken unto you …,” so let’s see what He has just spoken. There, we will find the recipe for joy.
Jesus spoke of Himself as a Vine and we are His branches. He tells us that the branch is to abide in the vine, and then there will be joy. Just what does it mean to abide?
Without genuine joy, your life is meaningless. And joy is found only in Jesus---not joy like His, but the supernatural joy of Jesus Christ. Do you have the fullness of joy? Abide in Him.