Experiencing Joy

We are invited to share, praise and glorify in God.

The Westminster Shorter Catechism says Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.

There is joy to experience as a Christian. The gospel tells us that no matter what we have done or haven’t done God loves us anyway and wants us to glorify and enjoy Him forever. God is worthy of praise from every mouth, confession from every tongue, worship from every creature. How glorious, how magnificent the name of God, father, son, and Holy Spirit: Who created and sustains the world in His grace and by His compassion saved and saves the world. God doesn’t need us and that is why Jesus dying naked and shivering on a cross is so amazing. Jesus forsook heaven to reconcile all of creation (not just Christians) to God that is the gospel that is the good news. God wants a personal relationship with us, God acts and we respond—we say yes or no. Our answer doesn’t change God. It changes us.

It is urgent that we respond to God in this life. I believe that God’s grace is sufficient for our needs, but this life we are living is all we got and we need to respond to God and trust that God will handle the rest. We each have an important choice to make. How we respond to the cross of Christ is the first step.  

I don’t know about you, but I want to live my life in praise and thanksgiving to the God who loves me in spite of myself and with the hope that at the end of my journey God will say to me, “well done, good and faithful servant.”

We shouldn’t wait for tomorrow next week or month we can begin today. It’s not only pastors, missionaries, saints, but you and me can know, live, and spread the awesome joy of the god of love and the gospel of grace. Salvation is not just about us. Salvation begins in our heart and ripples outward, for it to be worth anything it needs to be about all of us, not just an elite few. God doesn’t merely want to save Christians, but everyone everywhere.  

We need to remember that God is in control. We are not. We don’t have to worry about things working out or not. God will handle it all. We just need to respond in sane, healthy, and loving ways to the things and people we encounter in our daily travels. It’s not our spot to worry about the future. If we can control something, there is no need to worry and if we cannot control something why worry about it. So, is there left to worry about? Nothing, so why worry. We simply do the will of God. When we value what God has bestowed onto us and who we really are, God will entrust us with more. God will give us more to do and more to become.

Too much enegery is wasted by fretting over how we will do what needs doing. We simply show up and God will handle the rest. It has been my experience that I get so nervous that I either shut down or shy away from what needs to be done. When I stand up and show up, I find that the doing for the most part is done almost by itself.

What has God given to you? What is God asking you to do? Where do you need to show up?

Maybe there is something God is calling you to do. Something you have put off for so long that you want to pretend it never crossed your mind. Something you want to do, but you fear will end up in disaster or worse, so you are ignoring it and hoping the desire will pass. There is a reason God has put that on your heart. God wants you to do that thing whatever it is. So do it. Just do it. Step out in faith, show up and let God handle the rest. Don’t worry that you may stumble, that you may fall flat on your face. God will use failure or success for your good and through you bless many others.

May you discover and embrace the God whose grace sustains us, discipline corrects us, patience has borne with us, and love has redeemed us. I pray that God will help you to love everyone and be thankful for all your gifts by serving God and delighting in Him forever, from whose open hand we all have received much. I hope each of us will give our lives to advance the Kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Amen.

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