I was skimming through My Utmost for His Highest yesterday and came across a devotion on which I had written, "I need to read this every day." Well I guess I didn't take that too much to heart, because I definitely haven't read it in a long time. So I decided perhaps I ought to take a look at it again. I'm glad I did--and I must say, I can still hold to my original sentiment about it. I thought I'd share it here on the blog, and hope you glean from it what I did--the importance of abiding in Christ and finding your joy in Him.
My Joy...Your Joy
"That My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full." John 15:11
What was the joy that Jesus had? It is an insult to use the word happiness in connection with Jesus Christ. The joy of Jesus was the absolute self-surrender and self-sacrifice of Himself to His Father, the joy of doing that which the Father sent Him to do. "I delight to do Thy will." Jesus prayed that our joy might go on fulfilling itself until it was the same joy as His. Have I allowed Jesus Christ to introduce His joy to me?
The full flood of my life is not in bodily health, nor in external happenings, not in seeing God's work succeed, but in the perfect understanding of God, and in the communion with Him that Jesus Himself had. The first thing that will hinder this joy is the captious irritation of thinking out circumstances. The cares of this world, said Jesus, will choke God's word. Before we know where we are, we are caught up in the show of things. All that God has done for us is the mere threshold; He wants to get us to the place where we will be His witnesses and proclaim who Jesus is.
Be rightly related to God, find your joy there, and out of you will flow rivers of living water. Be a center for Jesus Christ to pour living water through. Stop being self-conscious, stop being a sanctified prig, and live the life hid with Christ. The life that is rightly related to God is as natural as breathing wherever it goes. The lives that have been of most blessing to you are those who were unconscious of it.
~Oswald Chambers, My Utmost for His Highest. August 31.
After reading this entry, I thought I'd check out John 15 to get a better feel for Chambers' message. It's been awhile since I read through John, and it was definitely about time that I read it again. I needed a refresher on abiding in Christ, that's for sure. It's such a simple concept, yet so difficult to implement in one's daily life (or at least it seems difficult--it actually makes everything much easier in the end). Thank God for His grace, that's all I can say! ;)
Wishing you all a joyful and restful weekend,
p.s. I will eventually do a post on Jenny's dress. I promise. Too much busyness in my life lately; not enough time to be creative.