What is God doing in your daily life? Besides the twin facts that you were born & haven’t died yet, why are you alive? If you lack joy in your life for whatever reason, or want to celebrate with me the wonders of the joy found in Christ, this post is for you. It’s a testimony of the joy all of us can have.
WITHOUT LOVE WHERE WOULD YOU BE RIGHT NOW? One day I shared my joy in Christ with an atheist raised in Russian schools. One can choose to be one of God’s sons created for a purpose, or choose to believe that a series of accidents created a meaningless existence. I choose meaning, joy & life. Tears came down his eyes when I said this. One doesn’t have to stay stuck barely making it in bleak Whoseville with its plastic smiles, while wondering if it is worth it, & feeling very insignificant when gazing at the enormous silent night sky. The same joy that is there for me, is there for you, because it is not something we produce, it is not something our circumstances produce, but it is a byproduct of abiding in Christ. Joy comes out of us like a refreshing spring when we abide in Christ.
Some will have a knee-jerk reaction of disgust, “Fritz all this God talk is nonsense. God is for weak people who need a crutch.” I realize this reaction sounds good to people, because they are just unwittingly repeating it from someone else. But think about it, are crutches evil? So when your legs get hurt, & the hospital says, “You can go home on these crutches.” Are you going to say, “I don’t believe in crutches, they are only for weak people.” Obviously there are plenty of weak people, judging from the suicide rates, and other indicators. I’ll take all the help I can get in life; I don’t need to prove anything to the world. I can relax with godly contentment that He knows best how to take care of me. “But Fritz, how do you stay content w/ all this injustice? It’s really hard to take.” Yes, I know people get away w/ murder (& identity theft)…but I also know that God will deal w/ it. He says, “Do not fret because of evildoers, nor be envious of the workers of iniquity. For they shall soon be cut down like the grass….Trust in the Lord, and do good.” PS 37:1-3 Does life give us a raw deal?…it happens…the answer to evil that gives us joy is to “do good” (v.3). Let God who has a bigger perspective work it out!! What we often have going on in these kind of dialogues is someone who claims to be broad-minded, who is totally unwilling to look at the things of God!! So much for their claim of being broad-minded, it only applies to checking out the Kingdom of Darkness. Proverbs 18:2, “A fool gets no pleasure in understanding but only in expressing his opinion.” Their speculation vs. divine revelation…I have never met anyone who sincerely tried the words & claims of Christ, who did not see they came from God. One man said, “When I was five, I told God to put a nickel in my pocket, & when He didn’t I knew he was fake.” People, God is not a vending machine, don’t test His sovereignty as God. Boy, He sure does give His people joy! And when He puts His Word in our hearts, it is powerful, esp. when we experience it firsthand. I testify that I & many others have been blessed by the joy found in Christ.
BUT WHAT ABOUT ALL THE TEARS & SUFFERING? Our tears are not lost, they are saved by God to water the seeds of His comfort. There is a famous verse “THOSE WHO SOW IN TEARS, shall reap in joy.” PS 126:5. It may well be asked, how can a person really sense genuine joy, if they know nothing of tears? In this verse we see a truth that applies in so many situations…The mother’s tears at raising a son, & the joy she receives…the soldiers tears in combat, and the joy of victory…the hard working farmer sowing in cold barren land w/ no guarantees, and his joy when the crop is harvested, and it is the man of faith struggling in the dark w/out answers, waiting for the divine revelation of light to make sense of his suffering. (Saintly Job said, “I will never give up.”) This is the ebb & flow of life. And the Word says God preserves all our tears. We sow in tears, & later reap in joy. Hope preceded joy.
IT IS JOY UNSPEAKABLE & FULL OF GLORY. “Praise Yah! Because it is good to sing praises to our God;…He heals the broken-hearted & binds up their wounds.” The famous 23rd Psalm is so full of joy. The Psalm takes one thru real life (incl. the Valley of the Shadow of Death) and Yahweh goes right along w/ us comforting us. Like PLP says, “God works in you…to do His good pleasure.” And it tells us repeatedly one thing He does is give us joy. By the way, Joy is connected to hope. It’s a joy to experience the riches of forgiveness, & the endowments of the Spirit. The Spirit will grab a verse off the written page & pierce the heart w/ it, for instance, “This is the way, walk ye in it!” ISA 30:21 The Spirit of God giving us direction in our lives also gives us joy. Indeed, at some pt. one’s walk w/ God has to become real, by experiencing a miracle or seeing how His direction/wisdom works, or whatever…but we must est. that personal relationship. “In thy presence is fullness of joy.” PS 16:11 The joy found in Christ triumphs over circumstances. It was one of the things Christ wants for us, “…that my joy might remain in you…and that your joy might be full.” JN 15:11 Hallelujah! I & others will testify, “It is joy unspeakable & full of glory.” Be blessed my friend.