Mourning into Joy | Conclusion: How to Persist in Joy | Holy Week | Devotional Series | Part 10 of 10

I feel people often mistake joy for two things. One, they believe it is a sentimental thing. And two, they believe it is about happiness.

I want to begin by acknowledging that this understanding is not entirely wrong. But then again, it is also not entirely right. Joy is sentimental, by that I mean, you can feel it. It is emotional, psychological… et cetera. But at the same time, it is much about discipline as well. The Psalmist made it a point that they begin their day by seeking God as their all satisfying good. (Ps 90:14) And then, they would devote their mornings and evenings in meditating the Word of God. (Ps 1:2) Because this granted them joy. They delighted in this. And this, I believe, it is nothing but the makings of a disciplined life. It trains the mind and the heart to focus on God and heavenly things – as all disciples should. (Col 3:2)

Secondly, joy is also about happiness. But happiness in this context does not mean an elevated sensation. If godly people were happy (that way) all the time – they’d be useless. They won’t understand what suffering is, what compassion is, what mercy is or love or what grace is. The kind of happiness this joy consists, is the subtle kind of gladness. (Is 35:10) It is the peace that comes from knowing and believing YHWH reigns supreme over our lives. (Ps 16:11) Therefore, the only way we persist in the joy of salvation is by persisting in prayer and in the Word of God.

There is a simple ideation that I follow. I make it a point that I devote the best hours of my day to God – in prayer and in reading the Word. I call it tithing my day. You see, I believe God instituted the law of tithing, so that we learn to prioritize Him. I believe time (like money) is also a privilege possession that God has gifted us. And as the Apostle stated, once in Christ, our time becomes a redeemed time. (Eph 5:16) I think giving the best of our day is (also) a proper response. But that is just (about) me. I don’t know what would suit you. But there’s one thing I know for sure – persisting in joy is a disciplined act. And good disciples, joyous disciples, fruit bearing disciples are known by their Christ-ordered disciplined life. I pray that God would intervene in our lives and grant us the heart that seeks such discipline. So that we could know Him more, love Him more, and serve Him more. To God be the Glory.


I am grateful to God for the successful completion of this devotional series. I am grateful to God for you as well, dear readers. I am grateful for the encouragements. I am grateful for all the new things I’ve learned during this period. I am grateful for my health and resources, and the necessary environment needed for me to study, and write this short series. I had a blessed time preparing and sharing these words. I hope you had the same experience as well. Until next time. Shalom!


Series Index: (1) Introduction: Why Observe the Holy Week (2) Palm Sunday: Sovereign Mercy (3) Holy Monday: Tough Love (4) Holy Tuesday: Who do we say this Jesus is (5) Spy Wednesday: The Temptation of Worldly Logic (6) Maundy Thursday: Jesus, Truly Human, for You and Me (7) Good Friday: I Find No Fault in this Man (8) Holy Saturday: Silent Prelude (9) Easter Sunday: Dawn of an Indestructible Joy


If you want to read a thorough scriptural exposition on Redeeming the time, you’ll find it here: Ephesians 5:16 / Redeeming the time

Mourning into Joy | Easter Sunday: Dawn of an Indestructible Joy | Holy Week | Devotional Series | Part 9 of 10

The Cross has been described in many ways. In its most popular interpretations, it is either seen as a symbol of God’s love or as the symbol of our sins. Both are right. But I don’t want to focus on either of the two. Today, I want to focus on what the Cross does for us. I want to focus on the verb not the noun.

Jesus explained, I’ll be gone for a while – I’ll have to endure death and suffering. But after that will come a joy – a joy incomparable, inextinguishable, a joy that is indestructible – a joy that satisfies – a joy that grants life to the lifeless – that turns our sorrows into a God honoring bliss. (John 16:16-24) Jesus was talking about the joy of salvation. I love it how Tony Reinke puts it into words. He writes,

“Jesus went to the cross for joy: to buy joy, create joy, and offer joy.” (pg. 99)

He carried all that we would suffer to the Cross – with great agony, and returned to grants us an everlasting joy. Jesus’ words were true for the disciples. And it is true for us too. As the Apostle notes, though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory. (1 Peter 1:8, ESV) But what is this joy? As Jesus Himself puts it, it is the joy of being born again. It is the joy of being free from sin and death. And this is what Easter Sunday confirms us – that this is the joy made available by Christ, for you and me. Jesus instructs, ask and the Father will give you – this joy that on one can take away.

Dear readers, I know we read about this joy a lot. I am not the first person to talk about it. And neither will I be last. But every time we are reminded of this joy – we tend to jump on it overlooking our pain and our ailments. And that just does not seem right. A joy that comes from ignoring our ills is never permanent. And I believe that is not what Jesus was talking about too. Because the joy that Christ grants is a joy that turns our sorrows, our ills, and our mourning into God exalting praises. What the resurrection grants you and me is the opportunity to turn our sorrows into joy, our mourning into joy, our pain into joy, our sickness into joy, our worries, our anxieties, our heartbreaks, our guilt – all into joy. Therefore, an empty grave no longer holds Jesus’ body, because Christ left it as the grave of our sins. So, dear reader… whatever troubles you today, I pray let’s take it to the LORD and let Him turn it all into an all satisfying, and God glorifying joy. To God be the Glory.


wishing you and your family a blessed Easter Sunday.


Series Index: (1) Introduction: Why Observe the Holy Week (2) Palm Sunday: Sovereign Mercy (3) Holy Monday: Tough Love (4) Holy Tuesday: Who do we say this Jesus is (5) Spy Wednesday: The Temptation of Worldly Logic (6) Maundy Thursday: Jesus, Truly Human, for You and Me (7) Good Friday: I Find No Fault in this Man (8) Holy Saturday: Silent Prelude

Mourning into Joy | Introduction: Why Observe the Holy Week | Holy Week | Devotional Series | Part 1 of 10

Observing the Holy Week has always been a polarizing ritual for me. Because, I’ve always felt it to be a virtue-signing act. Perhaps that is my own inner crookedness, that I cannot accept that anyone could even observe this ritual genuinely. Secondly, and this used to be my go-to excuse – (that) the scriptures never made it mandatory. But as I grow older, and as I learn to spend more time meditating in the scriptures – I find that it is not I but Christ that leads me into discipline and obedience towards holiness. (Matt 19:26) In other words, it is not by our strength, but by the virtue of God’s grace that we can genuinely observe the Holy Week to its full effect.

Though it is also true that the scripture does not make it an obligation to observe the Holy Week, but it sure does – undeniably builds us up towards it. The Old Testaments swells up to this point. This is the week, when the promise of salvation was about to be materialized. The Devil was to use all its might, the saints were to see the last of the trying times as sinners-unrepentant, and Christ – God, Christ was to lead us through this darkness – like YHWH led the Israelites through the parted Red Sea. The Holy Week, this ordinary week, may not mean much to the world, but for the believer it is nothing less than historic. Apparently, that’s why, all the four Apostles dedicated a major part of the Gospel to this week (alone). Because it was during the course of this week – that Christ changed our fate. He suffered everything we were meant to suffer. And showed us what obedience and perseverance meant. He took the wrath of God for us, and showed us – it is He – who was to come – and paid the full payment of our sins. And most importantly, it was during this week – He demonstrated the Father’s love for us – and bought us the prerequisite holiness to be united with God.

But beyond these reasons – that are grounded in the Biblical past, there is one that I find absolutely convincing. The reason why we should observe the Holy Week is because this is a wonderful opportunity for us to walk with Ekklesia – the body of Christ. David Mathis explains this better. He writes,

“Marking Holy Week is not an obligation, but it is an opportunity. It is a chance to walk with the church, throughout time and through the world, as she walks with her Bridegroom through the most important week in the history of the world. It is a chance to focus our minds on, and seek to intensify our affections for, the most important and timeless realities.” (Pg. 1)

How wonderful that is. I hope dear reader, that you’ll join me in relishing this wonderful opportunity – in walking with Christ and His Church, this Holy Week. Blessed Greetings.


NOTE: Daily Devotions will start from Palm Sunday i.e. 5th April ’20, 9 AM (IST). And end on Easter Sunday i.e. 12th April ’20. You can also subscribe the blog via email to receive the devotionals directly in your inbox.