Sunday, July 5, 2015

Philippians 4:4 -- On Rejoicing

"Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice."
Philippians 4:4

In one of my favorite books there is a scene where a woman is climbing up a mountain to find and bury her sister's remains, and although the errand she is on is a very sad one, her surroundings are so beautiful and the spiritual promptings such that she struggles against the impulse to rejoice.  She keeps telling herself all the reasons that she has to be unhappy, to try to dampen the hope and joy that surround her.  In this verse, God, through Paul, is asking us to rejoice and see the hope and the goodness all around us.  But we are too often like Orual (the woman in the story), resisting that impulse and instead dwelling on our worries and all the reasons that we think we have to be mad at the world.
I'm not saying we should run away from our responsibilities, or even ignore the evil in the world, and I don't think that Paul and God are telling us that either.  But I do think that we spend an awful lot of time thinking about things that we can't do anything about, that we have no control over, and that perhaps should remain in God's hands.  We spend way too much time scared of what might happen, or dwelling on what happened to us in the past.  Imagine if we took all that time worrying and spent it instead on the present... on the moment right in front of us.  We'd likely get more done, have better relationships, help more people, and we'd probably enjoy life a lot more and notice the good and cool things and people around us.
Whatever our circumstances, let's listen today as God encourages us to rejoice.  Let's let go of our resistance and allow ourselves to feel the spirit and the hope that God wants us to have.  Let's get rid of the things in our lives that are standing between ourselves and God's joy.  We don't have to carry those things around with us.  We can lay them down at Christ's feet, repenting, changing, and rejoicing in newness of life.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Total Pageviews