It would be very hard to read this passage and not think joyful thoughts. This is one of the passages from the Bible that makes it clear that God means for us to be Christians within a community of Christians. It is through that community that one can fully experience the joy of knowing God.
I can only imagine how giddy with happiness these first Christians must have been. They had probably never experienced anything like this before nor heard of anything like this. Even the stories they had heard of Abraham, Moses, Noah and all the other prophets of old were not particular joyful, at least not in this same way. These early Christians were poor, hungry, living in an occupied land, not knowing if they would be arrested and even killed. Yet, they gave away all they had. They spent their days in the temple and their nights eating communally with the others. And they had “glad and generous hearts”.
It is difficult to get recharged these days. By the end of the work week, most people feel totally spent, especially when faced with all the tasks and chores that need to be done at home over the weekend. Going to church and hanging out with like-minded folks has never been more crucial to our spiritual, emotional and even physical health. This is part of God’s charge to us.
So, maybe it’s time to go to the next softball game, attend the Wednesday movie nights this summer, or stay awhile after church and get to know your brothers and sisters in Christ. I am sure that you would be very glad you did.