What has made you sad recently? What has made you happy recently?
The Apostle Paul had a really hard life. It was full of all kinds of sorrow and sadness. Jesus had a hard life too didn’t he? And yet both Paul and Jesus were also full of great joy. In the Bible it says that Jesus was very sad as he walked toward dying on the cross. But it also says that he died on the cross for us full of joy.
How can someone be full of sadness and full of joy at the same time? Is that even possible?
Yes, it is. Not only is it possible, but Paul says that it is how were all supposed to be as Christians. Listen to how he describes his life here in 2 Corinthians:
2 Corinthians 6:10.[We are treated]as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, yet possessing everything.
One of the biggest mistakes we can make in our life is to think that joy and sadness are two separate “boxes” that we can be living in. We think that we are either happy or sad, but not both at the same time. And often we think that God wants us to be happy and that it is wrong to be sad. Or we think that life is all about getting out of the sad box and back into the happy box.
Sometimes instead of saying “why are you sad?” we say “don’t be sad,” as if being sad is bad.
Or when someone is sad we try to cheer them up right away instead of letting them just be sad for a while. Many Christians think that being sad is a sin. But it’s not. Jesus was sad – a lot. So was Paul.
In fact, every Christina should always be a little bit sad because we aren’t in heaven with Jesus yet. And we should always be a little bit sad because this world is so hard and full of sin.
But we should also always be happy and rejoicing at the same time. Why? Because God loves us no matter what. Because Jesus died for us. And because one day we will be with God in heaven. Yay!
You see, being a Christian means looking like the cross. Was the cross of Jesus sad or happy? Yes. It was both. It was sad that Jesus had to die for us. But it was happy that he did die for us. And now the cross is the life we live with Jesus. A life of both sorrowing and rejoicing all the time. Happy and sad knowing that the sadness in our lives helps us to turn to Jesus and his love where we will always find his joy waiting for us.
Because of Jesus we know that one day all sadness will turn into joy.
With Jesus we can sorrow and rejoice at the same time.
DO SOMETHING TOGETHER
Obviously you’ll need to watch Inside Out together (or at least this scene below). Talk about how sadness works in our lives to help us experience joy. This is not unlike how God says that our suffering produces glory.
I’m so happy you saved me and live in my heart. But I’m sad that I’m not in heaven with you yet. Help my sadness and my joy to always help me trust you more.
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