January 11, 2019
John 15:5-11 New Living Translation (NLT)
This week in our LIFE lessons we have been studying the Fruit of the Spirit. Our topic this week has been joy and we will continue to look at the fruit of joy, today. You and I can only bear the fruit of the Spirit as we stay connected to Jesus. He is our Vine or Source of spiritual life. It is the work of the Spirit to bring us ways to increase our fruit-bearing abilities. The Spirit causes us to exercise our faith in order to produce spiritual fruit that pleases our Father. The Spirit wants to cause us to bear so much fruit that it actually spills over into the lives of others around us.
So, what Scripture is telling us is we are to be so filled with the Spirit that no matter where we go, we are spilling into others the fruit of our salvation—love, joy, peace, patience, goodness, kindness, gentleness, thoughtfulness, and self-control (Gal 5:22-23) The antonym of joy is misery. In our humanity, we cannot produce joy or lift ourselves out of misery. But, the Spirit causes us to see beyond any misery and experience the goodness of God; that revelation causes joy to rise up within us. We cannot remain in misery; there is no such thing as a miserable Christian! That would be like saying God is not Good and his Grace to take care of us is insufficient. Lies. When you and I realize God is constantly trying to spill his love and goodness into us, around us, and through us, it fills us with joy. It is the Good News that we can receive and enjoy the perfect Love of God! Joy begins in you, so be a river of joy to others, today.
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. 6 Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. 7 But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! 8 When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.
9 “I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!
Prayer: Lord, thank you for lifting my heart with your amazing joy. Holy Spirit, with your help I am going to share your joy with others, today. In Jesus’ name. Amen.