The Meaning Of Perfect Joy

“In The Little Flowers of St. Francis a delightful story is told about how Francis taught Brother Leo the meaning of perfect joy. As the two walked together in the rain and bitter cold, Francis reminded Leo of all the things that the world—including the religious world—believed would bring joy, adding each time ‘Perfect joy is not in that.’ Finally, in exasperation Brother Leo asked, ‘I beg you in God’s name to tell me where perfect joy is,’ whereupon Francis began enumerating the most humiliating, self-abasing things he could imagine, adding each time ‘Oh, Brother Leo, write that perfect joy is there.’ To explain and conclude the matter he told Brother Leo, ‘Above all the graces and gifts of the Holy Spirit which Christ gives to His friends is that of conquering oneself and willingly enduring sufferings, insults, humiliations, and hardships for the love of Christ’” (Richard J. Foster, Celebration of Discipline: The Path to Spiritual Growth, 3rd ed. [New York, HarperCollins, 2003], 132, Kindle).

Sermon Illustration Preview

This is a preview of a sermon illustration members receive with a Ministry Pass subscription. Login or sign up to access our full library of illustrations.

Bring Christmas to Life Again

Fresh Ideas to Connect Christmas with Life

101 Christmas Sermon Series Ideas

Want to be the leader your people need but feeling overwhelmed and on edge?

Get a copy of our FREE guide to avoiding burnout and discover what causes pastoral burnout, and how to heal so you can lead well into the future!

Where can we send this ebook?

Bring Christmas to Life Again

Powerful and Relevant Illustrations Connect Christmas with Life

Christmas Illustration Ideas Mockup iPad

22 Fresh Advent Sermon Series Ideas for Christmas 2021

Inspiration to Breathe New Life to the Traditions of Christmas