Thought of the Day October 2, 2018 Joy through surrender

By 10:36 AM

Joy comes when we surrender my life to Jesus, so that he is the full Lord of all that I am, all that I have, all that I will be.  When Jesus is the center of our lives, then no matter what happens to us, we will not be shaken. The story takes place in early Rome about the time the Apostle Paul was martyred.  A striking scene occurs toward the end of the novel.  Hundreds of Christians are condemned to death for their faith.  They are lowered into a dark dungeon through a tiny trapdoor.  They will not see the light of day again until they are hauled back up through the trapdoor and taken to the arena to be destroyed by wild beasts, for the amusement of Roman spectators.  Meanwhile, they wait in total darkness.  The atmosphere in the dungeon is one of profound sadness.  Everyone in it is doomed to die a terrible death.  Suddenly the trapdoor opens.  A shaft of daylight pierces the darkness.  The prisoners below grow deathly silent.  As they do, they can't believe what they see and hear.  A new prisoner is being lowered into the dungeon to await death with them.  But, unlike them, he is not sad.  He is singing and praising God at the top of his voice. 
"Who is this man?", everyone asks.
Then the word spreads like wildfire.  The new prisoner is the Apostle Paul.  Paul's joy and happiness are so contagious that everyone in the dungeon begins to join him in singing and  praising God.  In a matter of seconds, the coming and presence of Paul transform the dungeon from a place of sadness and despair into a place of joy and hope. (To be continued)

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