“Verily, verily,I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. A woman when she is in travail hath sorrow, because her hour is come: but as soon as she is delivered of the child, she remembereth no more the anguish, for joy that a man is born into the world. And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you. And in that day ye shall ask me nothing. Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, he will give it you. Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” John 16: 20-24
These verses are breaking in where Jesus is prophesying to His disciples of His coming death. In verse twenty Jesus is telling His disciples that they will be sorrowful while the world rejoices in His death. Often when we experience hard things in life, things that make us sorrowful, it feels like the world is purposely rejoicing. Joy stands out in the midst of sorrow. We notice joy when there’s sadness.
When Jesus rose from the dead, the disciples’ sorrow was immediately turned into joy. They were so amazed at His power that they completely forgot their intense grief over Jesus’ death. That’s what Jesus wants to do for each one of us. He wants to replace our grief with so much joy that sorrow is totally forgotten. “Therefore the redeemed of the Lord shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their head: they shall obtain gladness and joy; and sorrow and mourning shall flee away.” Isaiah 51:11
At one time in my life, I was feeling depressed because I wasn’t having victory in my life. One morning in my devotions, I read John 21. Verse fifteen struck me. “Lovest thou me more than these?” I loved the desires of my flesh more than God’s desires for me. When I realized that and repented of that, I had peace and joy. Jesus replaced my sorrow and depression with amazing joy! But we cannot experience that without allowing Christ to do it in us. Verse twenty-four says, “Ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” God is a God of love. Our sorrow hurts Him, and He wants to heal it. When we ask for healing, we will experience Christ’s renewing joy. Not a little bit of joy either, FULL JOY.
-Blogging and Photography credits to Ginger Weaver