January 2, 2007
I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel.
Do you have joy today? I sure hope you do, because as followers of Christ, God has given us a unique perspective on life. For example, Christians should be the most joyful people on earth because we have the perspective of a sure and eternal hope that we will see Jesus someday. Now that should cause us uncontrollable joy!
One of the ways to gain that unique perspective on life that will bring you the joy God desires for you is found in Scripture. I encourage you to spend some time reading the book of Philippians, which is all about living a life of joy. The apostle Paul may have been in prison when he wrote this book, but he utters some of the most joyful words that I’ve ever heard. Through the book of Philippians, Paul shows us what it means to have that unique perspective and to live with genuine joy despite circumstances.
Jesus said in John 10:10 that He came to bring us an abundant life. Jesus adds years to your life, but I guarantee that He will also add life to your years if you let Him! The joy Jesus gives us is everlasting, so of all people, Christians should refuse to be beaten down, bitter or defeated by disappointment or discouragement.
How could Paul be excited about what God was doing in his life when he was going through such suffering? Why should we be joyful when we are undergoing physical, emotional, or financial struggles? Again, it’s the unique perspective God has given us. For example, God’s Word tells us when we are weak, Christ is strong.
Paul knew that in his weakness Christ’s power was being displayed. And that gave Paul joy because He could trust God to work through him and to bring about His purpose. And that purpose is ultimately to bring glory to the name of Jesus Christ!
I pray you will gain the perspective today that God has a good purpose behind every struggle in your life, and that you will rejoice that Christ is in control.
YOU CAN HAVE UNSPEAKABLE JOY AS YOU GAIN GOD’S