So far, we’ve been looking at living in the joy of the Lord. And maybe, just maybe, you’ve been reading and thinking, “Well, I hear what you’re saying and maybe God would want to put joy in your life, but He’d never do that for me.”
If you thought that, you wouldn’t be on your own.
I think that happens because the joy of the Lord seems so wondrous and so perfect that it’s almost too good to be true.
Yet Jesus said it is real, and it is for you and me. In fact, He told a story to explain exactly what God is like when it comes to blessing someone like you and me.
It’s called The Prodigal Son. You can find it in Luke’s Gospel, chapter 15, beginning at verse 11. It’s about a son who demands his inheritance from his father and then proceeds to waste it all, every little bit of it, until he ends up alone in a pig sty, full of shame and so hungry he wishes he could eat the pigs’ breakfast.
Now, when we’re sitting on the outside looking in on the grace of God and His love and joy, we’re a bit like this prodigal son. We kind of know from a distance about the goodness of God but we also know we don’t deserve anything from Him.
Yet the best decision that the prodigal son ever made in his life was to come to his senses and set out for home.
Why? Because when his father saw him, he raced down the street and threw his arms around the lad. There was no lecture, no punishment, no condemnation. There was only Dad, lavishing his joy on his son.
Jesus told this story to explain to us what God is like, and to show us that God compulsively wants to share His joy with us.
So, we could sit in our own mess, wishing things would change. But the best thing that we can do is to come to our senses and set out on that road back to God.
And when we turn back to Him, He pours His Spirit into us, He loves us, and He fills us with unspeakable joy! He can’t help it; it’s who He is! He loves you and me so much, it’s just who He is.
Thank heavens for that.
Lord, I am like that prodigal son in the story Jesus told. I am that person. But today I turn my life back to You. I ask you with every fibre of my being, as undeserving as I am, to fill me to overflowing with Your joy. Let Your joy become my strength. Amen.
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