Rejoicing is not a natural response to hard times (James 1:2). We usually wallow in self-pity and complain to anyone who will listen. Rejoicing in spite of the circumstances takes a supernatural focus (1 Thessalonians 5:18).
Problems with our family, finances and friendships overwhelm us all at times. We are either just coming out of a trial, experiencing one right now, or about to go into one.
Life is never easy; if something can go wrong, it usually will. Satan delights in throwing up roadblocks in our way. He wanders the earth, looking for someone to devour; and then he gets permission from God to torment us (Job).
However, when we change our focus from the earthly to the spiritual, we realize that Christ in us is always greater than Satan and his demons who occupy this world (1 John 4:4).
This lowers our anxiety levels and reduces our irritation and the trauma of our trials. Rejoicing through life allows us to more easily surrender to God's will and His solutions for our issues.
Rejoicing comes from a heart full of thanksgiving and praise to God for all He already did for us and for what we know He will continue to do for us.
As Paul rejoiced while in prison, we too can rejoice in our restricting circumstances (Act 16:25). God provides supernaturally once we relinquish our cares to Him (1 Peter 5:6-7). We pray, expecting Him to intervene in our negative situation.
He simply requires that we trust His timing and methods, and that we relinquish our specific expectations and accept His will for us.
Father God, teach us to rely on Your promises and to have faith in Your faithfulness. You provide us with an abundant life now as well as in eternity. You fill us with Your fruit and teach us to live in peace and joy regardless of our circumstances. Remind us to rely on You with all of our heart, soul, mind and strength.
There is no way we can save our self. We must rely totally on Your goodness and ways for salvation, sanctification and our daily provision (Hebrews 6:1, 9:14). Remind us that You do not delight in sacrifices or religious acts of service; but prefer that we walk in the center of Your will, guided by Your Holy Spirit.
Thought for the Day:
God asks us to believe in, trust in and rely on Him alone; and when we do, our life changes for the better.