A Joyful Journey

Psalm 37:4 Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.

 

Who enjoys a long journey? Our life is a journey. Are you enjoying it?

The driver of our earthly tour is God.

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Who is the best driver that you had been with? Why do you consider him a good, or even the best, driver you ever had? The best Driver in this crooked, anxious, and uncertain life is God.

Ps. 16:11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

Ps. 37: 3a Trust in the LORD,

God not only saved us to serve Him. The angels can serve Him better than we do. He also did not only save us to love Him, because in our sinfulness, we do not have the capacity to truly love Him, except He gives that love first.

God saves us, and desires to be our life’s driver, our Savior, our God, so He can SHOW TO US HOW GOOD HE IS, and so that we can therefore GLORIFY HIM. Eph 2:7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.  GOD SAVES US TO ENJOY HIM.

Did you already experience God’s goodness in your life? Is He already your driver that controls your life? God is the best driver in our life. Do you already have Him? When we have Christ as our driver, He gives us the fruit of His Spirit – JOY! (Gal. 5:22 Ga 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,). ONE OF THE SIGNS OF A TRULY SAVED PERSON IS JOYFULLNESS!

Ps. 16:11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

The direction of our journey is found in His Presence, through His Word.

Have you ever been lost?

Ps. 16:11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

Ps. 37: 4a Delight thyself also in the LORD

At present, people rely on GPS apps like Waze, Google Maps, etc. for direction. At last resort, we depend on Mr. Magta..magtanong..(Mr. May I  Ask)  Isn’t it more joyful if as we journey, we have Someone Who knows every step of the way?  God’s presence is with us through His spoken Word1 and through His Written Word.

  1. His spoken Word – His creation.free-nature-cliparts

“God said” – in Genesis, all of nature, matter and energy were merely SPOKEN by God. He did not move a finger when He created these things. Nature is the result of God saying “Let there be..” GOD SAVES US TO ENJOY HIM – HIS SPOKEN WORD:  HIS CREATION.

With the advent of technology, nature is less appreciated. We do not take time to smell the flowers, to gaze on the stars, to wake up early and admire the planetary conjunctions, or to even notice and be mesmerized with the chirping birds. Thank God for all His creation! Observe people, learn more about how nature works! Thank God for all these things that He created for our pleasure.

1 Timothy 6:17 Charge them that are rich in this world, that they be not high minded, nor trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy;

2. His written Word – the Bible.free-bible-clipart-bible-search

The Bible is the best life map we can ever have. Are we reading, memorizing and meditating on it?

The power of Biblical meditation2 should not be taken lightly.  Try this: THINK – violet elephant..violet elephant… now try to remove that in your mind.. can you do it? Now, think about a yellow dog..  yellow dog.. what are you thinking now? The yellow dog has replaced the violet elephant.

Our mind works like that. When the Devil throws a negative or sinful thought in our mind, we cannot remove it on our own. We need the power of God’s Word. We must REPLACE these thoughts with His written Word – the Scriptures!

The Devil is the “Hurt-whisperer”3. He does not want us to enjoy life, to enjoy God’s presence. He always throws sad thoughts, painful accusations, past mistakes, our regrets, our lost hopes, our broken dreams, our unanswered prayers, past failures, past experiences, past sins. If we do not have God’s Word, we lost the battle in the mind.

If the Devil wins the mind battle, we lost direction in our life. We make wrong decisions, we react in ungodly ways, we harbor dirty thoughts, we entertain evil emotions, we act sinfully. It all starts in the mind.. just like in the movie, Inside Out.. Joy must reign in our minds. God’s Word must be supreme in our thoughts.  We can only do this if in the morning, we have read His Word, memorized a verse, and meditate on it when the Devil strikes. God defeated the Devil’s temptation through His Word, He did it to set an example for us to follow.

God’s Word also gives comfort. The feelings of anger, disgust, sadness and fear are results of sin in our hearts and minds. When we read God’s Word and confess these emotions to Him, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. That is the greatest comfort of all – to know that you are forgiven and cleansed.

Jer 15:16 Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts. GOD SAVES US TO ENJOY HIM – HIS WRITTEN WORD, THE BIBLE.. when we do so, we will never get lost.

The device of our trip is God’s testings.

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What was the most traumatic experience you had about traveling?

Like those experiences, we can have many negative things happening to us as we journey.. because we are still in our sinful human body.. we fail, we get dirty, we get sick, we cry, we feel pain, we get tired.. that’s the body that we have. But these things should not take the joy out of our life.

Ps 37:5 Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass

To commit is “to cast” on Him our burdens, it means “to roll” on Him our worries. It is similar to a load being rolled unto a kneeling camel. Once the load is set, the camel stands and carries the load for the traveler. As travelers, God is also beside us ready to receive our rolling loads and burdens.

It also means “to reveal” thy way.. IN PRAYER. Reveal your honest sins, needs, hardships through prayer.

These negative and hopeless things are being used by Satan to attack us. But God can use these things for our good and for His glory. (Rom. 8:28).

Realize that pain is a necessity. Without pain, we cannot know that something is wrong. Without pain, we cannot determine if we are still alive. Without pain, we won’t cry out to God for help.

God can use these negative things as blessings in disguise. As the quote says, “One can only see a rainbow when his back is against the sun”. These negative things may remove the sunshine or happiness in our life, but our joy must remain, our trust must stay firm on God.

We have to obey God even if we don’t fully understand how things will work amidst these hard times.

Joh 15:11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

Before this verse,  Joh 15:10 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.

Similarly, in Ro 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.

Trials are part of this earthly life, but Jesus Christ Himself encouraged us to be of good cheer.

Joh 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Jas 1:2 ¶ My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;

The destination of our expedition is heaven.

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What is the feeling when you finally get home after a long journey?

Ps 37:7 ¶ Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him:

We ought to enjoy the journey because our final destination is Heaven.. the home of God! We are not going into a losing competition; victory is at the finish line. We are not going into a testing area, or into the first job interview; Jesus already passed the ultimate test for us. We are not going into a funeral; Jesus already conquered death and in heaven we will be more alive than ever before. We are heading to a feast, a wedding, a celebration! We ought to relax, to be at ease, and enjoy the journey!

Whatever happens here, nothing compares to being with God and fellow believers. Seeing and being with Jesus face to face, that’s what makes heaven, heaven! When we are in fellowship with other believers, that is a little heaven on earth. Being at church services ought to be enjoyable. We must come to these services with joy in our minds, hearts, and faces.

Heaven and all the angels rejoice when one person gets saved. Imagine what enjoyment it will be when all the people of God will be gathered as one. No other celebration could equal that.

Now that we are not yet in heaven, we should show to God that the life He gives us is worth the death He suffers. Our aim is to see God’s goodness in our life so that we can give more glory to Him.

GOD IS MOST GLORIFIED IN US WHEN WE ARE MOST SATISFIED IN HIM. – John Piper

Practical things to do:

  1. Fill your mind with God’s Word..Memorize verses about JOY – There are 60 in the New Testaments, 26 in Psalms and Proverbs and 155 through the entire Bible.. that’s 1 verse for every 2 days!
  2. Decide to be joyful every day, whatever happens that day. Remember, joy is not happiness. It is not dependent on things that are happening. It is one of the fruit of the Spirit.
  3. Don’t always follow your heart. Learn to lead your heart instead of following it. Don’t always rely on your emotions4.
  4. Share your joy to somebody.
  5. Pray and smile on every challenging task or situation.
  6. Sing.. when the waves are crashing round you5.

As life goes on, we must enjoy every moment of it because: God is our driver, His Word is our map, His trials draw us closer to Him and gives us more joy, and our destination is the most joyful place ever. REJOICE IN THE LORD ALWAYS!

 

Credits:

1 Piper, John. Desiring God.

2 Evans, Jimmy. “Overcoming the Battle  in Your Mind” Marriage Today.

3 Evans, Jimmy. “Defeating the Hurt Whisperer”. Marriage Today.

4 Gungor, Mark. “The Be Attitudes of Marriage”.

5 God wants to hear you sing.

 

Cliparts Credits:

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clipartpanda.com

123rf.com

photos.gograph.com

 

3 thoughts on “A Joyful Journey

Add yours

  1. thanks ate charlene! 🙂 all of your articles, helps me a lot on my christian journey! continue to be a blessing po. 🙂 I admire you.

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