You are my Joy

12 10 2011

“Answer me when I call to you, my righteous God. Give me relief from my distress;  have mercy on me and hear my prayer. How long will you people turn my glory into shame?  How long will you love delusions and seek false gods? Know that the LORD has set apart his faithful servant for himself;  the LORD hears when I call to him. Tremble and do not sin; when you are on your beds, search your hearts and be silent.  Offer the sacrifices of the righteous  and trust in the LORD. Many, LORD, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?” Let the light of your face shine on us. Fill my heart with joy when their grain and new wine abound. In peace I will lie down and sleep,  for you alone, LORD,  make me dwell in safety.” (Psalms 4:1-8)

Sometimes it is hard for me to understand God’s unconditional love. I try to think of an example of when I have ever seen love that is completely unconditional. Many people equate it to a parent’s love for a child, however, I am not a parent and therefore can’t really know what this is like. I look around and wonder “would I still be able to truly love a person if they did the worst thing possible?” Forgiveness and unconditional love seem like easy concepts, until we are faced with a person or issue we feel like we simply can’t forgive. And that’s right where God steps in. He allows us to view that person or situation through His eyes, to see the bigger picture, to simply let go.

And then I think about the way I love God. If he loves me unconditionally and helps me love others the same way, do I also love God unconditionally? I would say yes, until faced with a situation that I believe is “the worst thing ever” and I realize that my answer, to be honest, easily becomes no. My answer is more along the lines “God I love you, and I know that you have my best interests in mind, but I am going to keep pouting and withholding praise until you give me my way.” And that is not ok. I came across this Psalm today and it reminded me of how I have felt lately, that I don’t like what’s happening, and I want to pout about it. But even though I may not be happy, I can still be joyful, because my joy comes from the Lord. No matter what is taken away, or what lessons I may be in the midst of learning, or what I don’t understand, My Joy comes from the Lord alone. And it is this knowledge that allows me to be free in Him, to rest easily, to give up control. My emotions are not dictated by my circumstances, but instead by how much of my happiness I truly find in my identity as a child of God. I am in Christ and He is in me, and my joy should reflect that. Jesus you are my joy.

In His love,




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