“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your journey may be complete.” ~John 15:11 (NIV)
“I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your journey may be complete.”
When reading this passage, the first thing that stuck out to me was the phrase “I have told you this so that…” It was as if the “so that” was a flashing neon sign and door urging me to discover what was inside. I knew that in order to comprehend the joy that followed the “so that” in verse 11, I would need to read the verses that preceded this passage. So that, I would have the key to finding joy and keeping joy in my current season.
In the passages before verse 11, here is what Jesus reveals to us about having joy in this life. To get us back to Verse 11, I offer a few paraphrases of each verse. However Sister, I highly encourage you, to go back and thoroughly read each verse –one divine line at a time.
1. Verse 2: Jesus reveals that He cuts off every branch that does not bear fruit and prunes every branch that does bear fruit so that it is more fruitful.
Joy comes by allowing refinement. Though it doesn’t always feel good, it yields a harvest that is far greater and better than we can harvest ourselves.
2. Verse 3: Jesus reveals we are clean because of the word He has spoken over us.
Joy comes when we accept what He has done for us and what He says about us over our people or our circumstances.
3. Verses 4-6: Jesus reveals we must remain in Him; apart from Him we can do nothing.
Joy comes when we stay connected to the vine. Good fruit can only come from being connected to a good vine. The Vine that is good to us and for us.
4. Verse 7: Jesus reveals the benefits of remaining in Him – access to whatever we may need.
Joy comes by asking for it. He has access to anything we may need for the journey, season, or destination.
5. Verses 8-10: Jesus reveals that as disciples, we should bear much fruit. A fruit that ripens and matures by remaining steadfast in His love and keeping God’s commandments.
Joy comes from being steadfast and obedient. Being assured in His love for us and the path that He has already walked before us.
The truth of the matter is, God always gives us instructions for the “so that...” in our stories. So that, we may have joy for the journey and season.
Verse 11: “… so that joy may be in you and that your journey may be complete.”
It is a joy designed to sustain us and built to complete the journey within us.