This is joy

As I look at photos of my parents, there is a radiance still shining in their eyes. Today it dawned on me…this is joy! It’s with sadness that I’m beginning to understand something about joy. In its truest sense, this soul-deep quality is inextricably linked with suffering. (This sadness I’m afraid is an indicator of my still immature faith because it’s short-sighted, not looking far enough to see the ultimate reward.) As my parents knew from age and experience, the closer they were drawn to Jesus, the more they discovered that this joy produced by the Spirit of God is so far beyond simple happiness. Joy is like wings of flight carrying you over a rocky precipice, or skirting across waves of the deep with ease and courage, or a fullness of life like a warm sunrise. As with everything else about God and His unreachable ways, it seems these mysteries unlocked to the seeking soul on the narrow, difficult way always lead to a promised reward, blessing or revelation beyond anything imaginable. If only we continue on the way by trusting Christ daily! Like my parents did. Early in the 20th century, a once-YMCA staffer and college lecturer, Oswald Chambers, wrote, “Huge waves that would frighten an ordinary swimmer produce a tremendous thrill for the surfer who has ridden them…. The things that we try to avoid and fight against – tribulation, suffering, and persecution – are the very things that produce abundant joy in us…. A saint doesn’t know the joy of the Lord in spite of tribulation, but because of it…. The undiminished radiance, which is the result of abundant joy, is not built on anything passing, but on the love of God that nothing can change.” So, as I learn to follow the way with Christ, I’ll remember the eyes of my mom and dad – the radiance of true joy!

About the Author


Hey, welcome to goodbye2hello! My name's Joseph, and I'm the head staff writer. I'm also a father, brother and son, and I'm learning to follow Jesus. Yes, that's right, learning! The number one thing I would tell you is that the journey with Jesus is all about your heart and learning to surrender it more to Him each day. Simple as that, but also as difficult as that! I hope the pages here will shed some light for you on building your foundation with Jesus, and then what it looks like through the lives and experiences of the first followers, throughout the New Testament, to walk daily with Him. We are on this journey together, you and I.

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