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Day 4

Joy

So the women hurried away from the tomb,
afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his
disciples.

Matthew 28:8

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Eastertide (from Easter to Pentecost) invites us to open our hearts and minds to the joy that knowing God can bring. Scared as they were when they reached the tomb and found that Jesus was no longer there, the women couldn’t help but be filled with joy that his resurrection had come to pass, just as he’d said it would.

Easter people are joyful! I LOVE our benediction at church which we all say together:

This service is ended, but our life in Jesus Christ goes on and on. We go now into all the world. May our light so shine and our joy be so obvious that all who see us may come to praise God. Amen.

That says it all for me. It’s not about rules and regulations, doctrine or attendance. It’s about loving people into Jesus’ light. And what WAS it they recalled that Jesus said to them?

“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.” (John 15:11)

When our life is full of joy, it truly is worth living. But how do we open ourselves up to this “resurrection joy?” We can’t just conjure it up! All of us have good AND bad days. To conjure up those feelings that are not real — especially for someone else’s benefit — is dishonest, imo. It’s akin to having something to sell. Our responsibility is to lay our struggles, worries, and concerns at Jesus’ feet and seek his comfort through them all. That opens the doors of our hearts to the possibility of JOY.

And there can be no greater joy than knowing that nothing in this world can ever separate us from God. He loves me. He loves you. And there’s not a bloomin’ thing we can do about it!

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8:38-39)

And that is truly something to be joyful about!

Trevor Howard, in today’s Daily Practice, asks us to simply and quietly worship God for the amazing thing he’s done in raising Jesus that we may have that “resurrection joy.”

“For you make me glad by your deeds, Lord; I sing for joy at what your hands have done.” (Psalm 92:4)

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Picture Sources:
Book — Amazon.com
Joy flowers — Google Trends – Hot Keyword Searches
Sound of joy — Busy
Choose joy — St. George’s Episcopal Church