Greetings and good morning, brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series, where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years, the heavenly Father has revealed many revelations of spiritual truth to me, and I want to share them with you. This morning we seek to understand more on the meaning of the joy of patience.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
More on the Joy of Patience
Jesus said, "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I Have kept my Father’’s commandments, and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you." John 15, Verses 10 through 12
Brothers and sisters, in today’’s broadcast we shall explore more fully the meaning of the joy of patience, more precisely the joy of spiritual patience. This morning, we shall attempt to give a better understanding of this spiritual quality that has been so often misunderstood and confused with material and emotional joy. We want to show how this joy is linked to our purpose: material purpose in our material lives and spiritual purpose in our spiritual lives. To help us grasp further insight into spiritual joy, we shall call upon our old friend, the material analogy. The analogy is a wedding. We are soon approaching that time of year when marriage is in the air for lots of couples and many look forward to a June wedding.
When a women is proposed to and accepts, she is filled with excitement and joy. Usually this proposal is associated with an engagement ring. The ring is somewhat of a pre-contract that bonds the couple together, excluding any further explorations with other partners. They have made a commitment to each other. Soon, plans are set into motion to bring this engagement to marriage. Invitations are sent out. The wedding site is selected. Then the process of selecting the wedding dress and the participants and the bridesmaids takes place. Plans are made for the wedding cake. And the couple is filled with joy and even more excitement and expected joy as they contemplate the wedding date. A minister is hired to administer the ceremony and plans are made for the reception and the honeymoon.
In the ideal wedding, everything goes as planned. There are no bumps in the road and joy is felt without blemish. But this ideal wedding seldom occurs; there is usually something that goes wrong and casts a shadow of disappointment and sadness. But when overcome, the joy returns even stronger. Sometimes things go so wrong that the wedding is called off. The joy disappears for good. We can link this degree of joy to the accomplishment of our purpose. In this case it is the material purpose of getting married. The less the purpose is interfered with the more consistent is the joy that is experienced.
Appreciating the meaning of the purpose imparts joy or sorrow. Let’’s consider the meaning of a material value, say, for example, a new car. We can experience many joyful meanings from using this car, but eventually all the meanings will be exhausted, and no new meanings will be forthcoming. The joy that once was associated with the new car dissipates. Now let’’s contrast that material joy to the joy of the meaning of a spiritual value, say divine love, the greatest spiritual value known for God is love. As we experience this value, its meaning increases and never ceases because they are spiritual, eternal, and infinite. They are the personal revelation of God.
Always will we discover new meanings out of the spiritual value of love, and our material activities will continue to yield new meanings only to the degree to which they have become impregnated with spiritual values. The loss of spiritual values in our material activities or the failure to incorporate them causes so much sorrow, pain, and disappointment.
Now we turn to the comprehension of spiritual joy. Spiritual joy is also linked to spiritual purpose. And the more we pursue this purpose without interference, the more spiritual joy we experience. Remember what Jesus said: "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’’s commandments and abide in his love. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you."
"If you would share the Master's joy, you must share his love. And to share his love means that you have shared his service. Such an experience of love does not deliver you from the difficulties of this world; it does not create a new world, but it most certainly does make the old world new."
When we are exposed to something new, sometimes its finer points are not appreciated, which requires time. For example, quite a few people prior to entering college have no appreciation for classical music at all. They may have heard it and dismissed it because it requires the higher intellectual functions to appreciate it. And if you are only used to the level of physical and emotional stimulation of music, then you are likely to dismiss the higher satisfaction of listening to classical music which appeals to the higher intellectual and even spiritual centers. It requires time to open and develop these higher centers.
And so it is with the appreciation of spiritual joy. The joy of patience is spiritual tranquility. When we begin to respond to the spiritual command to be perfect even as the heavenly Father is perfect, we begin to learn to appreciate the fruits of the spirit, including spiritual joy.
And now we further examine spiritual joy linked to spiritual purpose--the doing of the Father’’s will--to love one another as Jesus loves us. Here we encounter an eternal purpose, one without barriers. There is nothing that can defeat this purpose except us because the Father has given us free will to choose or reject this purpose. Unlike the analogy of the material wedding, which is subject to obstacles and barriers that may intervene, no such obstacles or barriers exist when we decide to do the Father’’s will, decide to pursue an eternal purpose.
If we understand our role in this purpose, it will help us to more fully appreciate the spiritual joy of pursuing it. The Father is love, and this love is revealed through His Son, Jesus. No one comes to the Father except through His Son, and no one experiences this love except through His Son. Jesus is the personal revelation of the Father’’s love. On this material and finite level, the Father through His Son must manifest himself through us. Jesus is the vine and we are the branches. The appreciation of allowing the Father to manifest himself through us is spiritual joy.
We must not confuse spiritual joy with the emotions of material joy or emotional reactions that we may have. Spiritual joy is manifested as spiritual tranquility, with great outward calmness. It is associated with the display of the Father’’s character, which is the character of Jesus.
This concludes today's message on understanding more of the meaning of the spiritual joy of patience. We hope you find something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day.
Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.