Theme of the Week: Maximum Joy
Bible Verse: “But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
Scripture Reading: 1 John 1:1-10
One of my favorite stories of Christ’s love for us deals with a little girl and her love for dolls.
A man once came to her house to visit her mother and father. Her dad was not home from work yet, so her mother went into the kitchen to put together some refreshments while they waited for her husband to arrive. The little girl saw her chance. She coyly came up to the stranger as he waited in the living room and asked him if he liked dollies. Wanting to be polite, he assured her he did.
“Would you like to see my dollies?” the little girl asked. Not wanting to discourage her, the stranger said, “Of course.” So the little girl began bringing out her collection of dolls. It was quite large and surrounded the coffee table.
“Now, which of these is your favorite?” asked the visitor.
“Are you sure you like dollies?” queried the little girl.
“Oh, yes,” he confirmed. So the little girl rushed back to her room and returned, clutching an old Raggedy Ann dolly. She held it close and patted its head. The visitor was nonplused. This doll wasn’t nearly as impressive as the others. It had lost one leg; half its hair had fallen out; its belly button was missing, as well as part of an arm below the elbow. With astonishment in his face, he asked, “But why is this your favorite dolly?”
The little girl looked at him shyly and then back at Raggedy Ann. Then, holding the tattered doll very close, she said, “This is my favorite dolly … because if I didn’t love her … nobody would.”
I like that. Sin ravaged the early years of my life. But my Savior proved His love for me in that while I was still ugly (no belly button, one arm missing, hair torn out), He died for me. Now that’s true love.
In John’s first love letter, he speaks of our fellowship with Christ. It’s all about love. As our Magnetic Messiah draws us closer, we have an increasing desire to tell others about Him. And, as we proclaim Him, we are drawn even closer to Him. His love works in us to increase our fervency for Christ. The Holy Spirit wanted to leave this letter so that its’ readers might also share in this fervent intimacy with Jesus. This is true Christian fellowship. And this kind of fellowship brings the fruit of joy.
Maximum Joy comes about when we are living an abundant life. This love letter was written specifically so that we might experience an abundance of joy as we enter into this deep, intimate fellowship that John and the other apostles had with Jesus.
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