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Summary: This lesson is about how to have the Lord's joy in yoru life.

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If we look at our motives, most of the things we do in this life is to try to bring us joy. We work countless hours to try to save for our future so we can retire and enjoy life. Or we work to get a vacation and enjoy some time off. Let me put it this way; we don’t go looking for pain. We go looking for joy not only for us for the ones we love. But the older and more mature you get the more you realize that this joy is a very elusive term. I don’t know of many people with joy. Most people on the outward can portray that everything is fine but on the inside they are crumbling. I truly believe most of us are crumbling inside because we have put our hope in the wrong things to try to gain access to the joy we desire. So how do we find true joy?

As you know our 12 year old son Chase is Autistic. I have introduced both our boys to a very intellectual series of programs called “The Three Stooges”. The problem with Chase being Autistic is he can do a Nuk, Nuk almost anywhere at anytime. So the slapstick has started at our house. I wish it was just our house. We were at the Post Office the other day and that is a place with no joy. “Why does the Post Office bring the worst out in people? Well here we are in line and I am with Bryce and Chase. Everyone is looking at their watch and then looking up at the counter; “what is taking people so long”? And forbid those people who try to talk about their entire life to the person behind the counter. Seriously!!!! So in line people are intense, impatient and have no joy plus they are quiet. Then Chase in his loud voice says “Dad when are we going to watch the Three Stooges, Nuk, Nuk, Whoop, Whoop, Whoop. Within a second the dull and impatient faces have turned to a smile. Some may be recalling their youth and some my be realizing that life is meant to be lived. A lot of times we are just too serious. But we don’t know how to lighten up. Well if you want joy God tells us how to have it. Nuk, Nuk, Nuk

John 15:9-12 ““As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love. I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.”

Jesus just says that your and my can be complete, not lacking but complete by doing something. That something is this

1. Obey God’s commands – so what is this command

a. “Love each other as I have loved you.”

Can you imagine right now if you were to pray and ask God to help you do this? A lot of times we love people for what they can do or have done for us. But very seldom do we love those who treat us wrongly. THEN when people treat us wrongly or things in life don’t go right we lose our joy. But, if you could love others like God loves us then and only then will selfishness be taken out of our life. When we want joy most of the time our view of joy is tainted to excess. But in loving others we stop thinking about our own desires and concentrate on the other person. We love then NO MATTER WHAT. You may be saying “They don’t deserve my love, do you know what they have done to me”. Listen I hear you on that one but listen to me very carefully. God can say the same thing about you and I. Each day, each day we disappoint and fail God.

BUT HE NEVER GIVES UP LOVING US.

Please pray this with me:

“Lord forgive me for looking for joy in all the wrong places. Please help my hearts desire to love like you love. I have fallen so short in this area that I desperately need you to show me how to love. I want to love without conditions. I want to love my enemies and those who can’t further my career. I so desperately desire Lord to see people as you do. You say you look at the heart and we always look at the outward appearance of a person. Lord forgive me today for doing that. Please help me to know that EVERYONE has pain. Please help me to see that You love me unconditionally and to help me love others unconditionally also.” Amen

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