Abiding Joy
Abiding Joy

Abiding Joy

Abiding Joy

This week is spring break in our area, so we take a break from Wednesday night activities. Next Wednesday we start a new open study during our Wednesday night service (which meets in Peercy Hall after the meal) studying the Beatitudes. The Beatitudes are famously found in the first eleven verses of Matthew 5. Each beatitude starts with the word “blessed,” which can also be translated as “happy.” These verses reflect the kinds of attitudes a follower of Jesus should have as a normal part of life.

Matthew 5 isn’t the only place where beatitudes are found in the Bible. In fact, we looked at one this past Sunday in John 20:29, “Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” In the midst of capturing Jesus’s conversation with Thomas, John, the author, highlights a truth that applies directly to us: we are those who have not seen and yet believe. What I appreciate about how this section starts is that Jesus’s presence brought joy to the disciples. When He showed up and met them in their state of fear, they were glad (John 20:20).

Our lives are defined by an abiding sense of joy. I’m not talking about the fake happy face that we see sometimes. I remember once watching a woman smile the entire time while telling the story of being abused as a child. That was not something to smile about. It felt fake. I know she was seeking to emphasize how much joy she now has in Christ, but it’s ok to acknowledge that there are things that happen to us that are very hard and not fun.

Yet even in the midst of challenges, those who know Christ have a peace, a hope, and a joy that gives us the ability to acknowledge that we truly are blessed. That’s one of the things I love about Valley View. I love coming on Sunday and seeing joy pour out of so many, even in the midst of some very real challenges many are facing. We don’t pretend life isn’t hard, and yet we lean on the joy of knowing Christ and the power of community to get through the pain. It is that abiding joy, that peace, that hope, that over time will pour out into the lives of those around us, all over PRP, Valley Station, and Southwest Louisville.

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