What It Means To Abide In Joy

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“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:11

I posted a picture yesterday on Instagram that included a wood sign my husband made for me that hangs in our dining room. On it are phrases and words that flow out of some of our favorite passages of Scripture. 

One of the phrases is “Abide in Joy.” Abide means “to wait for, or continue in a place.” This little phrase challenges us as Christ-followers to remember that, no matter what the world may bring, joy is possible. We look for the joy born in God, and we rest in it.

This kind of joy God gives isn’t dependent on circumstance. We can experience trials and difficulties. We may have days where we aren’t feeling super happy. And yet His joy is enough for us. 

God gives us joy to the fullest. 

John 15:11 was toward the end Jesus’ life. Calvary and the cross were before Him. And yet He spoke of joy:

“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” - John 15:11

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When I worked with families who had a sick child at the hospital, and especially when I used to do grief counseling with parents who had lost children, there were always families who stood out. In spite of the world around them falling apart, they abided in joy. I could see sadness, but not hopelessness. There was tremendous loss, but there was peace. Sadness and hopelessness make sense when a child is dying.  But Christ gives us hope even in times such as these. I saw it over and over again. It was real joy. And it is available to all who are in Christ.

Abiding in God’s joy comes more quickly to us when we are walking closely with God, filling our hearts and minds with His truths. Whether listening to praise music, meeting God in His word daily, or surrounding ourselves with other joy-filled Followers.  

Abiding in joy . . . What a truth to pursue. 

Consider what it would look like in your world today to remain in God’s joy. Do you know people who demonstrate Christ’s joy in their lives regardless of circumstances? If you do, what do they say or do that leads you to recognize this in their lives? 

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