Tag Archives: joy

Encouraging One Another

Something to think about.

Encouraging One Another

23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:23-25

We’ve all heard it, I don’t have to go to church to be a Christian. Why then did God institute corporate gatherings? In the old and new testaments, the people gathered together at predetermined times to be taught, educated, and uplifted in the word and ways of God.  We were not created to be spiritual isolationist. We were designed to be bound together in love for our God.  Not even in Christ did we see the totality of God. We need each other to stay faithful to be educated and grow. To reach the purpose God has provided for us. We were made to help each other along the path of life. Without each other, we will end up creating a path that will not lead us to Christ, salvation or joy. We will end up lost.

 

The City of God

Something to think about.

The City of God

‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4New International Version (NIV) 

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. Revelation 21:21

Here are two references to the city of God. In one we find the ceasing of pain, sorrow, and death, in the other you see the city designed with precious stones.  The promise of God is a place filled with security, love,  peace, and abundance. Is there any other offer that is more appealing? Substantiated by the fact, the fact of the resurrection.  The best the world has to offer does not compare.

 

Simplicity

Sometimes to think about.

Simplicity

10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. Romans 13:3

At times the simplicity of the Bible is overwhelming in is naked and piercing truth.  If you love someone, you will not cause them harm. If you look at the unrest in our society, in our personal relationships. If you look at the pain and sorrow caused in all forms from every spectrum, it is due in large part because of the utter absence of love.

Sharper

Something to think about.

Sharper

12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

Have you ever wonder why the reaction to the Gospels is sometimes visceral?  Maybe because the word of God cannot be bargained with. It always brings you back to the truth. It is alive and relentless in its exposition of truth. It cuts through the layers of deception and exposes the lies we dilute ourselves with. It lays bare the inconsistencies of our thoughts and points to the one true God.  Maybe because it reveals to ourselves the shallowness of our selfish, sinful intent.

The word of God can also show you His redemptive, restorative grace. It shows you His longsuffering patience. It shows you His amazing love. It shows you the life He offers you. The word of God is the fork in the road with redemption, salvation, grace, love and joy on one side. The other road is the lost life you’ve chosen.

The Lord Bless You

Something to think about.

The Lord Bless You

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26

This blessing God spoke over Israel through Aaron is uplifting, motivating and generous.  What we seek in this life is contained in the first words of these verses,  “The LORD bless you and keep you.” What I seek in this life is the blessings of God and His protection which is what he has given us as per the first verse. Then He goes beyond that and gives us peace.  God gives us all who call upon Him these blessings, but we have to accept them. If you don’t let go of what you have, you can never receive the blessings God has for you and His blessings are always better.

Number Our Days

Something to think about.

Number Our Days

12 So teach us to number our days

that we may get a heart of wisdom. Psalms 90:12

 
Do you know when you will die? Obviously, the answer to that question is unknown. So this verse at first glance may not make sense. What would be the point in numbering our days? As I get older and realize there are fewer days in front of me than those behind. I now understand this verse.  The point of this verse is to remind us that our days are numbered that our life has an expiration date. From that knowledge, we can then set out to live a life of value, joy, and purpose. Wisdom in this sense refers to making your life count for you, not anyone else, you. Are you living a life of joy, meaning, purpose? It is your life and your days are numbered.

 

The Gospel

Something to think about.

The Gospel

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. Romans 1:16
 
We are put down humiliated, teased and denigrated for the gospel of Christ, yet it remains the best and only hope for mankind. No other religion, ideology, philosophy offers salvation to man. Only the gospel of Christ offers us any hope but hope with evidence. The evidence is the resurrection of Christ.

Inexpressible Joy

Something to think about.

Inexpressible Joy

8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,

A conundrum it must be to all who choose not to believe, our “inexpressible and glorious joy.”  We should wake up every day exuberant with joy for the knowledge we have of our assured future. None other has offered to me and confirmed for me my eternal salvation. My joy is not only in what has been promised but also in what’s been done. His resurrection as the first, His complete payment for my debt ensures my salvation for eternity. Why? Because I believe in the unseen God.

Where Can I Go?

Something to think about.

Where Can I Go?

1 You have searched me, Lord,

and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
you, Lord, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.
7 Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast. Psalm 139:1-10
 
These verses are both exhilarating and frightening.  If you belong to God, it is wonderful to know that where ever you are He is with you. It is reassuring to know that He knows you inside and out that He is with you always these are things that we who call upon Him cherish. 
For those who are fighting against or are in opposition to Him, they must find these verses to be utterly frightening. Knowing that God knows you better than you know yourself must be sobering and frightening. Knowing that none of the beneficial promises of God pertain to you must be demoralizing, to say the least. I imagine the only hope for those in opposition to God is that He does not exist. A vain hope of an undeniable reality. For God is alive, always has been and always will be.

Every Knee

Something to think about.

Every Knee

11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. Philippians 2:11

The day has been set, the time will arrive when everyone will acknowledge and recognize that Jesus is the Lord. Some with great joy some with great fear but to the glory of God, it will happen.