In church this week we talked about Luke 10, where Jesus sent out seventy-two of his followers to heal and to teach about him. When they returned, they told him of their success, with joy.
Verses 17-20: The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”
Our pastor, Todd, reminded us that we should not count on joy from our daily lives, our relationships, our success at work or school. Because there will be days when those things will fail to give us joy. Instead, rejoice because our names are written in Heaven.
So often Christians do not appear joyful to the world. I’m talking about me. I have a frown on my face. I am discouraged.
God has given us grace. We should rejoice!
John 16: 33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
We can have joy even when we have trouble. Jesus has overcome all the filth of the world, and he invites us to stand with him.
Tod has said more than once that we should begin each day by singing “Jesus loves me.” I am working on practicing this. Sadly, I often wake up feeling depressed, disappointed in myself.
How can I show God’s love to others feeling that way? Instead, if I remind myself Jesus loves me, and teach my heart to believe that, then I will have joy to share with those around me.
We sang a song Sunday, too, which touched me, “True North.” Such a joyful piece.
This song reminds me that I do not need to let my failures bring a curse to me. I can stand solidly in God’s love, changed, redeemed. I have chosen not to be condemned by my sin. I have chosen God’s forgiveness and grace. My name is written in God’s book of life. I can choose to be delighted. I can rejoice!
Philippians 4:4: Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!
Psalm 32:1: Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.
Psalm 37:4: Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.