Joy lends permission – permission to say and do and be however you want.
When the Cubs won the World Series last year, anything was possible on our streets. I ran down them in pajamas high-fiving people, dancing to a strangers music on the corner and conversing into people’s conversations without hindrance. I could have hugged anyone that I want, and people would consider it all joy and celebration.
If I were to do that any other day, people would wonder why I’m so happy, and probably be pretty mad.
The night they won, and the parade afterwards – people embraced craziness because they were happy too!
I thought, “This is incomparable to how joyful a city will be when individuals find their hope and salvation in Jesus.”
I’m convinced there cannot be the fullest sense of identity without joy. It’s imperative that the church discover joy. Without it, there is fear and worry. With it, there is expression and grace.
Joy lends permission. We saw it in one night. I ran through the streets – high-fiving people and telling them how amazing they are. I was the most drunk person who hadn’t had a drink since 5 PM, because I was full of joy. I had no regrets at my expressions and no judgement from others for my joy. And for a moment – the world was a beautiful place full of beautiful people who genuinely loved and shared the light in one another.
We need this joy, and we can have it in Jesus daily. Jesus will give us joy and set us free. It’s then that we will know and live from our truest identity, and embrace the true identity and presence of others.