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Joy!

Author: Jiming Lindal

Child of God


I have always been proud of my ability to detect people's sadness as if I have a special antenna sensitive to their suffering.  One Sunday, I saw a woman passing by me in church, and I immediately felt her overwhelming pain.  She happened to be someone I knew, so I turned around.  Later, my husband and I helped her during the trying times of her life.


Empathy for those who are struggling is my gift.  However, I can rarely feel joy.  Though I might be surrounded by joyful believers, their joy does not affect me.  On many occasions, I have felt happiness, but it is a fleeting feeling with no real depth – like spending a day in Disneyland.  But joy is that spring overflowing from your heart, when you feel your whole body comforted by God’s warm and tender embrace.  I had experienced such joy on just one or two occasions.


I prayed to God, “Please, let me feel joy!”  God didn’t answer me for more than five years until recently, things started to change.


I was reading the verses of Romans 3:23-25: 


(23)  “...for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” 

(24)  “... and all are justified freely by His Grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 

(25)  "... God presented Christ as a sacrifice of atonement, through the shedding of his blood—to be received by faith.  He did this to demonstrate his righteousness because he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished in his forbearance."


Previously, when I read the Bible, God's words seldom made an impression on me.  I wished for the Holy Spirit to reveal what He wanted to tell me, but that, like experiencing true joy, had eluded me.


Like a miracle, after reading those verses, my eyes were opened, as if the Holy Spirit breathed on the words and made them come alive.  I can recite verse 23: "We are all sinners falling short of God's glory.” But this time, when I read verse 24: "And all are justified freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus."  ...a wonderful vista opened in front of my eyes.  I saw this expansive land of God’s Grace stretching in every direction in a field teeming with the beauty of sheer joy. 


How great is God's love that we can see ourselves not just as sinners but are justified freely by His Grace?  How joyful!


My heart gushed like an overflowing spring of God's undying love.  I felt the healing Water of Joy!  God's words cleansed my heart and soul.  I savor their sweetness and will never let them go.


God, you answered my prayer!  The joy I felt was not based on occasions; rather, it was deeply rooted in His words and His gift of grace.


I am joyful that God has been so good to me…

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