Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Joy is Contagious

"Your God has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy." Hebrews 1:9

Laughter is contagious. It attracts. Have you ever noticed? When you enter a room, are you not first drawn to the one who is laughing? It doesn't matter if you know what they're laughing about, you can't help but smile in return and wonder, "What's so funny?" Laughter lightens the mood in the room as well as in our hearts

I had the privilege of spending the weekend with someone who loves to laugh. From the time we unloaded our cars, pitched our tent at the fair and sold our first book, we were laughing; not at anyone...just from the pure joy of life. Our joy attracted the crowds.

We sat side-by-side in the midst of 20,000 people glad to be living our dream as authors, sharing our talents with families, encouraging aspiring writers to pursue their dreams. It's not that we were privileged; that our dreams were fulfilled without pain, rejection and hard work. On the contrary, we both faced hardships in our journey (and still do) but the joy of what has been made complete thus far, gives us hope.

It should be that way with all of us on our journey with Christ. So many of us hang onto the sorrow of the cross; the picture of the suffering, dying Jesus that we forget the joy of the empty tomb. We use the cross as an excuse to focus in on our own suffering as though that is how we identify with Christ. We forget, that Christ came to give us hope, a future, abundant life...JOY.

The psalmist writes of our Savior in Psalm 45:7 "You love righteousness and hate wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy." Does picturing a laughing, joyful Jesus make you tilt your head and say, "Hmmmm?"

I don't think he attracted the crowds by frowning or furrowing his brow, pointing an accusing finger or motioning toward Golgotha. Instead he greeted the crowds with compassion, with healing, with forgiveness, with hope for the future. That brought joy. That's what attracted the crowds

Does the joy of the Lord attract the crowds (however small) to you? Can you truly say, "The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song." Psalm 28:7

No comments:

Post a Comment