[Jesus said] I say these things while I am still in the world, so that they may have the full measure of my joy within them.
Giving Us His Joy
If someone were to ask you for a list of things that drain you of joy, you might say any number of things: My job is hard. No one appreciates the work I do. The government seems to treat its citizens unfairly. Those in power don’t seem to care about the little people. My family ignores my needs. My pain is hard to endure, and on and on and on. Several things can drain a person of joy, which is why it’s good that Jesus prayed about your joy.
In John chapter 17, he prayed that you would “have the full measure of my joy.” But notice that he didn’t pray you would receive “the full measure of joy.” Instead, he prayed that you would receive “the full measure of my joy.”
Jesus’ joy didn’t come from what others did or did not do to him or by how pleasant a life he experienced. It came entirely from what he could do to love others. We see that as Jesus continued to love the world even when his job as Savior of the world was hard—when he was never appreciated to the extent that he should have been, when his government unfairly condemned his innocent life to death by crucifixion, and when his people often still ignore his commands.
“The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve,” Jesus once said to his disciples. He found joy in using his life to do whatever was necessary to forgive our sins, prepare a place for us in heaven, and assure us that no person, experience, or sin will ever be able to take it away from us.
May the Lord answer Jesus’ prayer in your life today. May you find joy in serving those around you.
Father in heaven, help me to live with the joy of Jesus each day. Amen.