The Greatest Joy
There are many things that bring joy in life. A babies smile, a long walk with a close friend, good cups of coffee on an early morning, reading an inspiring book or spending time with grandchildren. The list goes on and on. God has placed in this world many joys that warm the heart. When measuring the joys of things that matter most, there is no greater joy than the fellowship of salvation. The apostle John was a man filled with the spirit of writing about love. His gospel declares the love of God in sending Jesus to die for all men. Three epistles exalt the many characters of love toward God and man. One of the greatest joys John had was to know of the continued faith of his brethren.
God’s people need God’s people. Everyone struggles with the challenges of life continually being assaulted by Satan. It is easy to think of the negative things in life and problems in the church. John’s approach was positive. He rejoiced to know that his fellow saints were still walking in the truth. It mattered to him. The relationship he had with the elect lady and her children was the joy knowing they all walked in the bounty of God’s grace. And John told them of his joy.
It is not easy being a Christian. Walking the path of truth is a narrow course. Being separated from the world can be a challenge. Many lose sight of where they are going falling away from salvation. John wanted everyone to know his joy that his fellow saints were still walking in the truth. There can be no greater joy because nothing else matters. Gaining all the wealth of the world will be lost in death. Fame is a fleeting mirage that many seek for without happiness. Fleshly lusts are exciting and fun for a time but then fade to the ravages of the body as it dies. The angels of God must shake their head in dismay to see the pride of man when there is nothing for man to be proud of. Without God, man is nothing. With God, man is everything.
Joy is an expression of utmost happiness. I am thankful for my faithful brethren who encourage me and admonish my heart with their love and grace. The greatest joy in life will be to hear the words, “Well done, good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy.” Wow. Did you hear that? We get to enter into a world where joy is everywhere. No greater joy is to know of my brethren who faithfully walk the path of righteousness. The greatest joy is when we share together in the blessed home of Christ our Savior. Looking for joy? Find it in the relationship of joy by walking in the truth.
What is happiness other than the grace of being permitted to unfold to their fullest bloom all the spiritual powers planted within us. (Franz Werfel, Between Heaven and Earth, 1944)