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Contagious Joy

Dear Redeeming Grace,

One of the virtues we seek to be known by as a church is joy. In fact, joy is one of seven shaping virtues that all Sovereign Grace Churches seek to display, along with humility, gratitude, encouragement, generosity, servanthood, and godliness.

In his introduction on these virtues in the Sovereign Grace Journal, Mickey Connolly, pastor at Crossway Community Church, writes the following:

"Gospel joy is contagious joy, and joyful believers will produce joyful churches and joyful gatherings."

I love that and have been thinking about it this week. Gospel joy is contagious joy. It can't help but spread. It's a joy that comes as fruit of the Spirit and from abiding in all that Jesus is for us. In John 15, Jesus charges us to abide in his love and keep his commandments. Then he tells us this:

"These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full." (John 15:11)

The joy of Christ himself--full joy--is found as we remain in and follow the one who loves us and gave himself for us. When we remember and celebrate God's grace in our lives through the gospel, it has a continuous transforming effect in our hearts. We have a taste of that joy now, but imagine what joy awaits us when we will be resurrected with our Savior for all eternity!

As we approach this weekend, may our joy spill over out of hearts amazed by grace and touch the lives of those around us. All for the glory of Jesus.