5 | Joy Throughout Eternity
Today may be a dull Tuesday for you in early December with Christmas just a little too far in the distance. Don't go anywhere! Top yourself up with this post below, a fantastic reminder of where God has placed you in the whole course of history. MP Team xx
“For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone.” - Romans 14:7
I love the Christmas story. I love watching it seep out to the centre of society, wrapping hearts and minds through carols and celebrations. Whether one knows Jesus personally or not, there’s something about his life and story that touches hearts and minds through the fun and festivities of christmas.
I love the Christmas story because it’s a reminder of a bigger story that we’re caught up in: a story of grace, hope and joy, a story 2000 years old, but never outdated. It’s a story that offers perspective, as my personal story becomes caught up in the person of Jesus, his life death and resurrection.
Romans 14:7 offers a similar perspective, a reminder of the good story that envelopes each and every one of us. It’s a reminder that our story can never be understood apart from God’s story; the two are deeply connected, intimately entwined. We don’t live for ourselves, or die for ourselves, as v.8 goes on to say, in all things ‘we belong to the Lord.’
The Holy Spirit, sent by the Father, lives in us and works through us. One of the fruits of the Spirit is joy; this isn’t a temporary state of happiness but a deep, prevailing joy that permeates all we do. It’s an unconditional joy that runs deeper than pain, deeper than sorrow, deeper than excitement. The greek word for ‘joy’ is closely related to the greek word for ‘grace.’ We have joy because of God’s grace.
The knowledge and understanding that we are wrapped up in a larger story of grace and hope is reason for great joy! We can rejoice in all things, because our story isn’t the final story - his is. Our tragedy becomes his triumph. Our heartbreak glistens with his hope. Our We don’t live for ourselves alone, or die for ourselves alone - we live for him, with him.
Each day I have access to deep joy because of the Holy Spirit living inside of me, and I can rejoice because my story, and your story, is eternally caught up in God’s good good story.
Natalie is in her Third year at Durham University, studying Theology & Religion. Her favourite days involve spontaneous adventures, pancakes and good coffee. She’s passionate about seeing people live life to the full, with Jesus at the centre. And trainers, she loves trainers.