What part of your life’s journey are you in right now? Are you enjoying it?
While asking God to give my husband and I wisdom and guidance regarding a business opportunity that is opening up for us, I was led to the verses in 1 Timothy 6. This one verse speaks louder than the rest:
Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not highminded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy; –1 Timothy 6:17
Then I realized, I tend to focus on the word that appears three times in this verse: “rich”; yet at this time, one phrase had a different effect on me, “all things to enjoy”.
God is giving you and me richly, abundantly, beyond what we expect, ALL THINGS TO ENJOY! These things not only refer to things related to becoming rich, but much more than that!
Here are three things that God gives to you that you can richly enjoy from your journey:
ALL THE POSITIVE THINGS
There are the things easy to enjoy – the blessings, the answered prayers, the achievements, and all other things that make you smile. You tweet them to friends, share as testimonies, or as Facebook updates. Sharing the good things that happen in your life is sharing encouragement and joy to others.
But what does God want you to do on these beautiful things that He allows you to experience?
Is it to develop pride in you, tapping yourself on the shoulder, saying, “I’m such a good person… see how God is blessing me?”, or as the verse above says, it should draw more trust to the One Who gave it to you?
Your positive experiences will become more meaningful to you, will give you more joy, when you give it back to the Lord for His glory and develop more faith for the journey ahead.
Remember, maybe it’s not your prayer that has been answered. Maybe, it was someone else’s prayer for you that God actually answered. Or maybe, as one testimony I heard long time ago, the blessing is there to correct you, after you realize you don’t deserve such blessing, but God gave it to you anyway. Or maybe God is rewarding your faith. Whatever is God’s reason, the response from you should be gratitude and more faith.
Is this currently the journey that you are in right now? Life is a sunshine and there are so many reasons to enjoy the journey? Then, be humble, trust God more, and give Him all the glory!
ALL THE NEGATIVE THINGS
Now this one is hard to swallow. How can you enjoy things that are happening against you? Is it really possible to have a smile on your face amidst losses, disappointments, failures, stresses, or pains?
Well, God says, “all things”. It’s not particular to positive things only, and life is always a mixture of both. Why would God ask us to enjoy the negative things? Because even the negative things come our way after His approval.
Remember Job? “..that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.” (Job 1:1b). Job lived a perfect life, yet in one point, God allowed Him to suffer more than any of us on earth has experienced: losing everything in one day, and then mocked through his suffering.
Remember Jeremiah? “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” (Jeremiah 1:5). Jeremiah was an ordained prophet from the womb, but he spent his life in desolations and anguishing prayers. His lamentations are even recorded in the Bible.
Remember Jesus? “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21). Even the God in human form, Jesus our Savior, suffered the greatest disappointment in life – to be betrayed and crucified by those whom He had healed and saved.
If these great men suffered the most severe of life’s negatives, what do you expect from your journey? God would certainly allow hurtful, sad, and sometimes faith-challenging events in your life. Why? Again, for His glory! These circumstances are His instruments to draw you closer to Him, to make you realize He is everything you need.
Are you currently experiencing the storm of life? Rejoice! This is the best time to exercise your faith. This is God’s way for you to have more peace and joy amidst the storm… for the storm, the peace, the joy… all are from Him.
Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: – 1 Peter 1:6-8
ALL THE UNCERTAINTIES OF LIFE
In between positive and negative things, are the “unsure of” things. You can’t decide, you don’t know what’s the next step, and you are afraid of the things that will happen in the future. How can you enjoy such part of your journey?
Like the negative things, the uncertain things are surely part of life. “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” (James 4:14)
You really don’t know what will happen in the next minute, in the next hour, in the following day, or weeks, or months and years. You know not what shall be on the morrow.
What is important is to have faith that God is “already in your tomorrow” as one song mentions:
To come face to face with uncertainty is a reason to rejoice because it will develop more patience in you – a fruit of the Spirit, a true trait of godliness, and a virtue lacking in many individuals nowadays. Let this part of your journey make you “Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;” (Colossians 1:11).
Which of these three journeys are you in right now? You can only find hope and experience joy in whatever journey you are when you have genuine relationship with the Source of Joy, your truest Friend, your Savior. If you do not have Christ in your life, whether you are in the positive part of your journey, you will not experience real joy. How do you start a relationship with the One Who can bring joy into your life? Find out here.