May 19, 2022

Each day, I reflect upon a word or phrase from the readings of the day. I encourage you to do the same and perhaps incorporate that word or phrase into your daily prayer.

I have told you this so that my joy might be in you and your joy might be complete. (John 15:9-11)

What does it mean to have our “joy be complete?” Given the context, I know that eternal life is the opportunity for complete joy to which Jesus is referring.

The passage gives me pause and raises a question for me: Is it possible to have complete joy here on earth? I do not want to get too philosophical, breaking apart the word ‘complete’ and delving into the essence of completeness. I am too simple-minded for that.

So let’s take the definition of ‘complete’ out of it and ask the question this way: What can we do here on earth to experience as much joy as possible?


*Maintain a loving and active relationship with God. Let him know you are around. Talk to Him. Show gratitude for the many blessings in your life. Allow Him to work through you.

*Have joyful heart. No one can walk around whistling a happy tune 24 hours a day, but we can have a joyful heart – a heart that is open to others, that sees suffering and responds, and that shows a willingness to forgive.

*Live by the mantra, “Your will be done.” Give up control.

None of the above suggestions are easy. However, I think they give us the best shot of experiencing as-complete-as-possible joy while still on this earth.

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