Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Is Your Joy Forever?

“Wow God says in His Word "be joyful always" 1Thess5:16...learning this is only possible if I commune with Him continually...no matter what I'm gonna love Him cuz He knows the worst & loves me the most...wow that's something to be joyful always for...yay God!!” – Marian Monti Frankenhauser

That quote, posted originally on Facebook, is just one of the examples of Marian’s spirit because she truly knows our God.  I look forward to hanging out with people like that.  And her excitement in those statements just made me want to explore more what she said.  Let’s look at the verse.  1 Thessalonians 5:16  “Rejoice evermore.”  Not yesterday, not today, not tomorrow, but forever.  And that’s not a suggestion, it’s a command.  The word for “rejoice” is unique, too.  Part of the meaning of the word is “to relax”.  I think God used the Greeks to show us that there’s relaxation in rejoicing and you can’t fully rejoice if you’re not relaxed in the Lord.

There’s also Philippians 4:4,  “Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.”  1 John 1:4 says, “And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.”  And in John 16:24, we read Jesus saying, “Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.”  And that’s an interesting train of thought.  God wants us to have rejoicing always.  He has authors, inspired by the Holy Spirit, create His Word to help us relax and rejoice.  And He gives us anointed prayer so that we can rejoice in God’s meeting our needs.  That doesn’t leave a lot of room for a pity party!  In fact, Nehemiah 8:10 tells us, “Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”
One of the things we’ve been taught in our ministry that there’s a difference between joy and happiness.  Happiness relies on external situations, joy or true rejoicing relies on our internal response, no matter what the circumstances.  And, just yesterday, Joel Miller wrote a post about that very subject.  You can read it at http://t.co/TVltBdI.  It’s well worth the read.

So, how do you relax, rejoice and live in joy instead of happiness?

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We can bring joy into other lives by praying for Pat, Denise, Dana and her family, Scott, Russ, Columbia, Jimmy and Betty, Mindy, Curtis, Peggy, Joyce, myself, and Libby. And any of those special people God has put on your heart to consider in prayer.


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