I pray that they will experience and enter into my joyous delight in you so that it is fulfilled in them and overflows…may they see that you love each one of them with the same passionate love that you have for me…may they experience the same endless love that you have for me, for your love will now live in them, even as I live in them!” John 17:13; 23; 26
Jesus wants us to experience and enter into the same joyful delight in the Father that He has in Trinitarian unity. Read that again. I wrote this last night and then went to bed; I lay there for awhile thinking about this. A joyful delight in God. I have tasted this but at this time I feel quite far from this experience.
I am reminded that Jesus said, “I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will” (John 6:38). And again, “My nourishment comes from doing the will of God, who sent me, and from finishing his work” (John 4:34). Jesus repeats the prophecy of the Psalmist who says, “I delight to fulfill your will, my God, for your living words are written upon the pages of my heart” (Psalm 40:8).
Jesus had such joy and satisfaction in living for the Father’s will. You have to know and love someone deeply to be surrendered to another will than your own. You have to have a lot of trust.
I read the other day that the word which we translate into English as will comes from both a Hebrew and Greek work which mean “yearning.” It is that yearning which lovers have for one another. Not a yearning of the mind alone or of the heart alone but of the whole being. A yearning which we feel is only a glimmering of the depth of the yearning of God for us. (Prayer and Our Bodies by Flora Slossan Wuellner, originally from Breath of Life by Ron DelBene) Doesn’t this blow apart the heavy, dutiful, joyless “shoulds” that have surrounded so much of the teaching on doing the will of God?!
You and I have the yearning inside of us. It is there, placed by the Spirit. It needs fresh fanning into flame. It is a yearning towards the true and living God as He truly is. We have the “pulse” of God beating in our veins for we belong to Him and are meant to dwell in the Trinity. The yearning leads us into a sacred flow in the beautiful life of God as we live our daily lives.
This language gets me moving towards Pentecost, once we come to the end of the 50 days of resurrection and wait for the fresh filling of the Spirit. This is what it is to be freshly filled with the Spirit! Joyous delight in God. Overflowing. Receiving a revelation of God’s passionate love – the same love He has for Jesus. Endless love living within us. Oh God, we need this desperately. I need this desperately.
Read all the verses at the front end out loud slowly. Sit in silence and admit your utter dependence on the Spirit to quicken the word into your life.
Read the verses again and highlight what stands out to you. Silence.
Say the word, “yearning” out loud and sit in silence with it. Invite Jesus to come and say something to you about the word. Maybe He will say something, show something or simply be with you and the word.
To close, a poem by Andrew Murry, God’s Will, Our Dwelling Place
Thou sweet, beloved will of God,
My anchor ground, my fortress hill,
My spirit’s silent, fair abode,
In Thee I hide me and am still.
O Thou, that willest good alone,
Lead Thou the way – Thou guidest best;
A little child, I follow on,
And trusting, lean upon Thy breast.
Thy beautiful, sweet will, my God,
Holds fast in its sublime embrace
My captive will, a gladsome bird,
Prisoned in such a realm of grace.
Within this place of certain good,
Love evermore expands her wings,
Or nestling in Thy perfect choice,
Abides content with what it brings.
Oh, lightest burden, sweetest yoke,
It lifts, it bears my happy soul,
It giveth wings to this poor heart;
My freedom is Thy grand control.
Thy wonderful, grand will, my God,
With triumph now I make it mine;
And faith shall cry a joyous Yes!
To every dear command of Thine.