FULL JOY IN GOD'S PURPOSE
In John 17:13, Jesus wanted “His joy fulfilled in them (the disciples)”. Remember Heb. 12:2? “Who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.” So great was the anticipation Christ had in establishing the church that He despised the shame of His sufferings that were necessary to build the church. His joy in birthing and building the church made His sufferings completely worthwhile. This joy was in Christ because of the eternal purpose that God planned for the church before the foundations of the world. The true experience of this joy would come to the disciples and us through the filling of the Holy Spirit.
While our human limitations prevent us from knowing Christ’s joy fully, it is “fulfilled” in us as the Spirit fills us with understanding of the purpose of Christ – to build His church. Our joy will never be “full” unless we pursue the same purpose for which Christ came. On the other hand, the more we fill our lives with this purpose as our pursuit, the more our lives will be filled with the joy of Christ.
In the most difficult circumstances and persistent opposition, Nehemiah said, “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (8:10). If you are feeling spiritually weak, it is highly possible that your purposes in life are not in alignment with God’s. Ask the Holy Spirit to clear your vision to see “what is the hope to which He has called you, what are the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of His power toward us who believe” (Ephesians 1:18-19).
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