Joy is the delight we find in Christ. It is not based on our circumstances, but on our relationship with Him who never changes. The joy I have found in Christ is one of my main motivations for sharing the gospel with others. Let me explain.
I remember the joy I had when I clearly understood the gospel. I was on a mission trip (ironic, I know) where we were hosting backyard Bible clubs for children. A girl on our team shared with me how to make the craft for the children. As she shared, she showed me a dark piece of construction paper saying it represented our sin before God. When I saw it, I felt the full weight of my sin that I had experienced for years and the dread at the prospect of having to face God one day. I knew deep in my heart that I would have no answer for Him except, “Guilty as charged.”
I then remember her turning to the next page, which was red. I then visualized in my mind (now I know it was the illumination of the Holy Spirit) that when Jesus died on the cross, He took my guilt, shame, and sin upon Himself on my behalf. He died in my place and took the punishment that I deserved. Because of what He did, I was pardoned by God. My trust was completely in Jesus and I experienced peace with God and the assurance of heaven. My heart was full of inexpressible joy.
Now fast forward to a conversation I had years later with a lady named “Julie.” It was one of the first times that I had shared my faith using the same color method (which is found on our “Good News Wristband”). My goal in sharing with her was for her to experience the same joy, the same freedom I had found in Christ. And I still remember to this day the radical change in her expression when she realized that Jesus had paid it all for her. She trusted Christ, could not stop smiling, and said she had thought for years that God had forgotten her, but now realized that God loved her and sent His Son so she could be with Him.
In talking with Julie, my joy was doubled. Not only did I have the joy of walking her through the greatest message I had ever heard, recalling the joy I had experienced in Christ, but now I had the joy of seeing her experience the same thing.
And that same joy is one of my top motivators in evangelism. Paul says in Romans 1:16 that, “I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God unto salvation for everyone who believes.” And based on that promise, anytime you or I share the gospel, it has the power to change someone’s life just like that! And nothing brings me more joy than to have a front row seat to see someone experience joy in Christ for the first time!
For Further Reading: