“These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:11
The first question we must ask when reading this verse is what are “these things” that Jesus is talking about? So I backed up a bit to look at the full context of this verse. This is a passage in John where Jesus is talking about abiding in Him. When you back up to verse one it begins the passage.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser.” John 15:1
Jesus goes into an explanation about abiding in Him, just as the grapevine abides in the plant. You see you can’t cut away the vine from the base of the plant and expect it to continue to produce fruit. That is impossible. And it is impossible for us to live for Him if we are cut away from Him. When we abide in Him, and He in us we will live a productive life as a Christian. We will only be able to bear fruit for the kingdom if we remain connected to the vine. We must remain connected to Him, in order to fulfill the purposes of God.
Another point here is that when we are abiding we are in a position to ask Him for blessings
“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” John 15:7
Now the point in this statement is not just to give us a way to get whatever we want. But the fact of the matter is if you are abiding in Him, you will want the things that will line up with His will. So as you learn to abide, your thoughts will change to kingdom thoughts and your wishes and desires will have a kingdom purpose.
But then Jesus wraps up this little lesson with our focus verse today. You see He is not trying to get us to abide in Him just so we can do the work. He is telling us that abiding in Him is how to have a fullness of joy. The kind of joy that will only come by living for Him, and living in His will. The kind of joy that comes as a result of abiding in His love. I am on a pursuit of joy this week. And really I want to live my life that way all the time. Abiding in the joy of Jesus is not living a life void of problems, but it is living a life in step with Him so as to know He’s got whatever is concerning me. It’s living a life that is producing fruit for the kingdom. It’s knowing that my joy is full and complete because of Him.