Jesus chose the cross because He chose you. He endured the cross with joy because He knew you were worth it. You are His reason for the joy of the cross.
There is a powerful love that flows from knowing that Jesus took away the wrath we deserved by nailing it to the cross with His own body.
Jesus gave up His life so that we could have life and have it abundantly now and for eternity (John 10:10).
The cross should bring us joy like no other because it has given us the gift of eternal life that is like no other. We get to walk in the victory that the cross afforded us as we believe in our hearts that Jesus is Lord and obey Him.
Colossians 2:14-15 says, “Having canceled the charge of our legal indebtedness, which stood against us and condemned us; he has taken it away, nailing it to the cross. And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”
Jesus defeated the enemy’s hold on us by dying on the cross and on the 3rd day He rose from the grave. Jesus suffered greatly, but His reward for His suffering was well worth it. He endured the cross because He loves you so much, and God gave His only and begotten Son Jesus because He loves you.
Jesus knew we could only be saved by Him sacrificing Himself on the cross because He is the only perfect one to cleanse us from all our sins and iniquities (1 Peter 1:18:19). Jesus suffered greatly for us, but it was all worth it to Him knowing that those who accept Him as their Savior and live in Him will forever be His.
Hebrews 12:2 says, “For the joy set before him he endured the cross…”
The greatest suffering that Jesus experienced on the cross became His greatest joy.
We too can experience joy through suffering because it’s in our sufferings that we know Jesus more intimately.
Only Jesus can make it possible to find joy in our sufferings. How do we find joy in our sufferings? By encountering a revelation of Jesus’s love for us as we relate our sufferings to His sufferings.
Jesus is the suffering One so when we go through suffering, we get to know Him more in His sufferings.
Isaiah 53:3 says, “He is despised and rejected by men, A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.” His heart breaks whenever His beloved bride rejects Him. So as we experience rejection and suffering, we get to feel how Jesus feels.
God too promises that He is close to the brokenhearted (Psalm 34:18). When we go through suffering, we will get to experience the nearness of God like never before. His nearness strengthens us and conforms us to His image.
The Christian walk was never meant to be easy, but God promises to walk with us and strengthen us as we carry our cross.
It’s in our dying that we find life. “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it” (Luke 9:23).
There is also a reward for those who suffer for doing nothing wrong. 1 Peter 3:14 says, “But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it.”
In Jesus, we are raised up to see from His perspective rather than our limited perspective. We get to see beyond the grave and into eternity. What seemed hopeless now is seen with hope.
This is what it means to be seated in the heavenly realms — we see from God’s perspective through the death of Jesus on the cross and His resurrection.
Ephesians 2:6 says, “And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.”
In Christ, we have the Spirit of God that allows us to understand God’s thoughts which are higher than our thoughts. We have the mind of Christ that allows us to see beyond what our physical eyes see (1 Cor. 2:12,16).
Will you look to Jesus in the midst of your suffering and behold His love as you remember Him as the suffering One? There’s no better place than to be seated in heavenly places with Jesus.
We don’t have to fear anything in life including death because Jesus OVERCAME death and is now ALIVE with the keys of death and hades in His hands. Jesus promises those who are His will have eternal life.
Romans 6:23 says, “The gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” When we choose to believe in Jesus and live in Him, we will never live a day apart from Him now and through the end of the age (Matthew 28:20).
The doors of death and hades are locked up for the bride of Christ. All of this was made possible through the death of Jesus on the cross. He so loved us that He freely gave Himself unto death for us. The cross brought Jesus temporary pain but eternal pleasures. You too have to carry your cross, but like Jesus, our cross will lead us to a resurrected life with eternal pleasures forevermore (Psalm 16:11).
So remember, you can experience the joy of the cross.
Prayer: Jesus, thank You for what You did on the cross and for showing us such great love. Help us too to find joy in carrying our cross.