My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God. Psalm 84:2
Jesus said, “Abide in my love. I have said these things to you so that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete.” John 15:9,11
Diane and I have had a much-needed 5 day getaway/vacation. I actually slept until 7:30 on a Sunday morning. My alarm has usually gone off long before that – or not at all because I’ve awakened before 5. Not today. We had a leisurely breakfast. We set out for worship at the church that a former associate pastor of mine nowserves. The service was edifying and the message right on. The days have been spent seeing the Nimitz and Pacific War museum here.Then came the wildflower trek. The day before we toured four local vineyards. Relaxing. Refreshing.
There is a deep sense of joy in my heart. We’ve enjoyed good food, some excellent wine, some beautiful vistas, and some great experiences. Worship today was surely a building block of our joy. Diane and I talked over dinner about the message here. It was about how God keeps us from harm and danger. It was a great reminder of how God does that by keeping us from eternal harm. We will not be spared from every evil in this world. Not even God’s Son was spared the troubles of this world.
The Bible tells us that Jesus suffered, “for the joy set before him” (Hebrews 12:2). He endured the insults of sinful men. He made satisfaction for our sins. He endured the cross – all in anticipation of the joy that he would experience when he sat down at the right hand of God. He reigns there now. He welcomes all who look to him into his realm of perfect live, forgiveness, salvation, and joy.
This is a good reminder for those of us who want to make heaven on earth. There are moments of joy we can all glimpse. But they are all fleeting. As I write this – in the joy of having this wonderful time away – I have a headache. My cough has been so incessant that Diane has nearly lost her patience having to endure it. I’m tired of it as well.
There will, however, come a Day when all the troubles of the world will melt away. All the joys of the world will be fully experienced – without any condition or exceptions, delays or qualifications. Our joy will be completely complete. Total. Absolute. Full. Then we can say with the psalmist: “My heart and my flesh sing for joy to the living God.” Amen.