Monday, March 23, 2009

Choose to Rejoice....

"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:4-7 (NIV)

Worry is wasted energy.
It is consuming, draining and unhealthy.
Worry fits this world but certainly does not fit the picture of a joy-filled life, the life that Jesus came to give us.
Nothing will rob you of joy quicker than worry.
God came so that we would not have to worry and yet we continue to do so.

Action one:
Choose joy
Philippians 4:4 "Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!"
The Message says it this way: "Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, revel in him!"
The author, Paul, is serious about joy, telling us twice in this passage to rejoice!
The word "rejoice" means "to practice joy, to take delight in and be glad".
Many times, life makes it impossible to be happy but we need to understand that happiness is not what Paul is calling us to.
Happiness is a cheap imitation of true joy and totally dependent on the circumstances of life.
Joy, however, is a deeply rooted confidence that God is in control no matter what the circumstances of life may be.
Joy is a choice.
You have probably discovered that there is absolutely no way in this world to escape pain, but we can avoid joy.
The pursuit of joy is a matter of choice.
Our first and most important choice is to come to the only source of true joy - Jesus Christ.
We must also choose to rejoice in the midst of every circumstance - good or bad -- and keep our focus on God, gladly accepting His plan for our lives.
We must choose a joyful perspective.
Let's Pray
Father, I feel as if worry constantly nips at my heels, trying to steal my joy. Help me to see life as You see it and to choose Your perspective instead of my own. Lead me into Your peace as I learn to trust You wholly. In Jesus' name, I pray Amen

Excerpts from a devotional


Rick Lawrenson said...

Thanks for the reminder!

Agnes said...

Thanks for taking time to do this particular post. It really blessed and admonished me as i read through it tonight.