A growing conviction I've had in the past few years is this: We have short-changed the gospel by sayingthat salvation is merely abot forgiveness and belief; I would argue that Scripture paints a much bigegr picture. Salvation is about finding the the apex of our joy in fellowship with Christ (1 Cor. 1:9). It's a very practical question: Where do we pursue the height of our joy?
The traditional way of presetning salvation (as forgiveness) makes it a one time event where someone easily stops maturing in the faith. However, when salvation IS unyielding joy in Christ, then is is a perpetual pursuit, motivated by Himself, not fear or ambition or anything else. Such a joy is ultimately satisfying.
this joy is the very reason He cam to die (see John 17:13, 24). Forgiveness simply makes such a joy possible! Joy is not an optional part of the Christian life; it is a command :"Serve the Lord with gladness" (Ps. 100:1) "Delight yourself in the Lord" (Ps. 37:4) "Rejoice in the Lord" (Phil 3:1)