Conntecting the Dots

Why Easter Brings Joy

Do you remember these lyrics?

I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart

Where?

Down in my heart

Where?

Down in my heart

I’ve got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart

Where?

Down in my heart to stay!

Psalm 63-3,5

I sang this tune as a kid in Sunday school. Back then, joy meant a whisker rub from my grandpa, a trip to the candy store, playing “Red Light, Green Light” on the front lawn with my friends, riding my bike around town, mastering a new song on the piano, and buying new school clothes each September. Simple things they were, but they brought a smile to my face and a song to my heart.

Some things never change. Today joy means cuddling with my grandkids, hearing their giggles, and seeing their fascination with a ladybug. It means riding motorbike with my husband. Receiving an email from a reader saying one of my books has changed her life. Planting flowers in my backyard and watching them flourish. Sipping hot chocolate with friends on a cold evening. Seeing the sunset’s reflection on Mt. Baker. Meeting with God every morning.

But the greatest joy of all comes from something I may never fully understand—how God in heaven stooped and sent His Son to bridge the chasm caused by sin because He desires relationship with mankind. Imagine—for love’s sake, Jesus gave up His heavenly throne to dwell among us. He endured ridicule and torture, became sin for our sake, was forsaken by His Father, hung on a rugged cross until His life ebbed from Him, and was buried in a borrowed tomb.

Everything changed three days later. Angels appeared. Boulders moved. Soldiers fainted. Resurrected life conquered death and then birthed hope. Seemingly unfair tragedy opened the door for joy to enter the lives of those who place their trust in Jesus alone for eternal salvation.

I’ll never fully understand the scope of Jesus’ work on mankind’s behalf, but this I know—the Good News brings joy that bad news cannot thwart. Yes, we experience pain and suffering, disappointment and loss, but these things cannot overtake us thanks to what Christ has done. His presence goes with us and gives us strength. His power at work within us makes us more than conquerors. His promises give hope that all will be well someday. And joy follows. Not a giddy glee, but a deep-settled assurance and peace that overrides sorrow and angst.

Take time this Easter weekend to sit quietly and reflect on Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection and how these impact your life. Thank Him for what He’s done. Praise Him for His love that surpasses human understanding and for the joy that’s yours to experience no matter what.

Consider using the Psalmist’s words and turning them into a prayer: “Your unfailing love is better than life itself; how I praise you! I will praise you as long as I live, lifting my hands to you in prayer. You satisfy me more than the richest feast. I will praise you with songs of joy” (Psalm 63:3-5).

Enjoy your weekend!

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