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Real Joy [9-15-19]

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Have you ever had one of those days? It can be described in one word - apathetic. I thank God they don't happen very often. Do you ever have one of those "meh" days?

In Galatians 4:15, Paul asks, "What then has become of the joy you felt?" That's a good question to ask. "Where has the joy gone?"

Jesus did not save us to live a joyless life. Never settle for a lack of joy in your life. Never let a joyless rut cut a path through your life. Jesus didn't die on the cross for that to happen. It's not what God has made us for. God has made us for joy. These words of John 16 are Jesus' words to you. Here's the truth we're going to see in them. In the days when things are going great, it's easy to talk about joy. When life is fantastic, we are not hard-pressed for joy. What about when things are rotten? What about when plans don't work out? What about when challenges pile up and hardships increase? Can you look someone in the eyes and tell them you have a joy in Jesus Christ you can't find anywhere else?

Do you have joy in all things? Today, and next Sunday, we're going to find out how Jesus gives us joy in all things.

First thing we need to do is understand the context. Who is Jesus talking to? The disciples. These are the last words Jesus is going to have with his disciples before he goes to the cross. That alone is reason enough to take our time with these 18 verses. Jesus is speaking to them about a kind of joy that can face the cross. Jesus has it. And he says he wants his joy to be their joy. Jesus is facing the cross tomorrow. But before all that happens, he needs them to know what real joy is.

So that's our context. Jesus wants his disciples to know real joy. In spite of a world that can sometimes overwhelm with sorrow and sadness, Jesus wants them to have real joy. Today, and next Sunday, we're going to look at how Jesus brings joy into our lives.

Let's start with John 16:16-20:

A little while, and you will see me no longer; and again a little while, and you will see me.” So some of his disciples said to one another, “What is this that he says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’; and, ‘because I am going to the Father’?” So they were saying, “What does he mean by ‘a little while’? We do not know what he is talking about.” Jesus knew that they wanted t