After all that snow and cold we’ve had some great days of 60+ degree weather. What a refreshing break. Tells me Spring must be right around the corner; can’t wait … so many great changes … life … energy … color … activity. And one of the best things about Spring: it means Summer is right around the corner. Summer is my favorite time of year … hot weather, the beach, and the family trip to Dorney Park, which is our local adventure and water park. My girls and I love the roller coasters but each one of them had to make the transition from fear to amazement and joy.
As we pursue our relationship with God and draw closer to Him there are some characteristics that should be evident. Joy is one of those characteristics. Christianity is joyful. And joy is good for your health … physically, psychologically, relationally, emotionally, and spiritually. During difficult times, we might not always have laughter, but God provides joy in all of our circumstances. The Bible describes practical steps to joy and ways to laugh more.
Try to stop taking yourself so seriously! Take time for laughter, for fellowship. Learn to enjoy yourself. Start each day out by rejoicing. Thank God for another day. Thank Him for the opportunities ahead of you. Thank Him for his love and abundant grace. Involve happy people in your life. Smiling faces make you feel happy. Laughter is contagious.
You see, just like the rollercoaster, once we get past out fears, joy is abundant. Once we realize the designer and operator is in control and that we will be fine, we can enjoy the ride and it is exhilarating. God is the ultimate rollercoaster operator. He’s designed ups and downs in the ride, but it is planned for our growth and joy. Your fear comes when you believe you designed or are in charge of the rollercoaster. Paul realized who designed and operated his life’s rollercoaster. So Paul was joyful in all circumstances. He knew how the ride would end and enjoyed it … at all times.
Today, simplify your life in order to enjoy God’s goodness. Examine what you fear and why. Identify the circumstances you think you are in charge of. When you can trust God, you will be free of fear, and joy will be abundant in all circumstances. Sometimes we all get so involved in our “to-do” lists and worrying about tomorrow that we miss enjoying the moment. Remember the old adage: Take time to smell the roses! Your decision, choose well.
O Master Designer, thank You for providing joy in every circumstance. Help me to experience a cheerful heart in every situation You designed especially for me. Help me to walk in Your freedom and to laugh often. Build my trust in You so I can live free of fear and embrace all You sovereignly bring into my life for my growth. I pray this and all prayers in the name of the One who is the true source of all joy, Jesus Christ; and all God’s children say – AMEN!
A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.
Is not this what we said to you in Egypt: ‘Leave us alone that we may serve the Egyptians’? For it would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the wilderness. And Moses said to the people, “Fear not, stand firm, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will work for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall never see again.