I know God likes to hear me laugh. Jesus wants me to be joyful and glad.
But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful. Psalm 68:3
God is so good. He is in a good mood all the time. He loves and never stops loving. He is loyal and faithful to us all. He is God. There are none others. Not money or credit cards or 401k’s. He alone is worthy of our faith and love.
So, let’s shout it out!!
Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.
Worship the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the LORD is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Happiness, true happiness, comes from keeping one foot in front of another on His road. He speaks to my heart in a frank and direct way. I hear him. Will I listen and do?
You’re more than happy when you follow his directions, doing your best to find him. That’s right—you don’t go off on your own; you walk straight along the road he set. You, God, prescribed the right way to live; now you expect us to live it.
Oh, that my steps might be steady, keeping to the course you set; Then I’d never have any regrets in comparing my life with your counsel. I thank you for speaking straight from your heart; I learn the pattern of your righteous ways. I’m going to do what you tell me to do; don’t ever walk off and leave me. Psalm 119:1-8
- Psalm 112. The Happiness Of A Good Person. The Blessed State Of The Righteous (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- The Pursuit of Blessedness (5ptsalt.com)
- Guardrails- Clearing Your Conscience…the message I never got to preach! (deandeguara.com)
- Psalm 1 NIV (lwharper.wordpress.com)
There is something horribly wrong with a “victim mentality”. It is complete and total mistrust of God. God is in control. He is in a good mood. He loves us and wants the best for us. God makes everything come out right. Not a few things. Not things occasionally. He is the God of making everything RIGHT.
How easy it is though to not trust Him and wallow in our misery. Too easy some days. I can see clearly what He isn’t doing in my life. I am happy however when I focus on what He is doing.
So … God makes everything come out right. That is that and that is all there is to it.
God makes everything come out right; he puts victims back on their feet. Psalm 103
It all starts at home. Work is important and so is the church, but living love out at home is where it all starts and ends. It can’t be faked at home. Either I do things out of love with a blameless heart or I don’t. Everyone at home knows.
And so I seek to do every act at home out of pure love. No selfishness. No boasting. No ego gratification. Only love.
I will conduct the affairs of my house with a blameless heart. Psalm 101:2
I must find the place of worship. I must open my eyes. In His generous love, I can really live. It is about His strength. It is about His glory. I must praise Him in an excessive way. I must go overboard in my thanks.
So here I am in the place of worship, eyes open,
drinking in your strength and glory.
In your generous love I am really living at last!
My lips brim praises like fountains.
I bless you every time I take a breath;
My arms wave like banners of praise to you. Psalm 63
It is God’s goal for me to align my heart with my words in a way that is acceptable to God. I am to love Him and others with all my heart. Do my words reflect that? Does God’s love in my heart cause me to think amazing things and then act in a way that reflects His love?
Beyond what I have to say, is what I am thinking and meditating on acceptable to God?
May I align God’s love in my heart with what I say.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14
Ever heard of Francis Thompson? Young guy, drop out, drug addict, drifter, sometime homeless. Eventually diseased and dead at 48. Probably not the kind of guy you would want to hang out with nor call a friend. And certainly not the kind of guy you would be inclined to be Loyal to.
But right before his death in 1907, Thompson came to know to very the core of his soul what true loyalty was. He expressed it in his poem, “Hound of Heaven.” It begins:
I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;
I fled Him, down the arches of the years;
I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways
Of my own mind; and in the mist of tears I hid from Him,
and under running laughter.
Up vistaed hopes I sped;
And shot, precipitated, Adown Titanic glooms of chasmèd fears,
From those strong Feet that followed, followed after.
But with unhurrying chase, And unperturbéd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
They beat—and a Voice beat
More instant than the Feet—
“All things betray thee, who betrayest Me.”
The poem goes on and as Thompson unsuccessfully seeks peace through various human pursuits, he continues to hear, but ignore, the Voice that follows him unfailingly.
The poem, on its surface, is a dark story reflecting Thompson’s lifelong struggles. But beneath the surface, it is truly a Love story. Thompson’s Hound of Heaven is God, our Good and Great God who loves us so much, He follows us through each step of our lives. He is at our side. He is Loyal.
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.
If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
Psalm 139: 7-14
Jesus said, “Everyone who asks (begs) receives …” Sometimes it takes a lot for us to ask. We think we don’t need help. We can do it ourself. Help not needed. We will ask if we don’t have something we want or if we can’t do it ourself.
God has promised so much. May I humble myself and ask. May I beg for His help. His love fills the entire earth. There is no end to it.
Because you have satisfied me, God, I promise to do everything you say. I beg you from the bottom of my heart: smile, be gracious to me just as you promised. When I took a long, careful look at your ways, I got my feet back on the trail you blazed. I was up at once, didn’t drag my feet, was quick to follow your orders. The wicked hemmed me in—there was no way out— but not for a minute did I forget your plan for me. I get up in the middle of the night to thank you; your decisions are so right, so true—I can’t wait till morning! I’m a friend and companion of all who fear you, of those committed to living by your rules. Your love, God, fills the earth! Train me to live by your counsel. Psalm 119:57-64
I remember as a child not wanting to sleep in the dark. There were monsters in the closet and under the bed. The light helped. It always does.
There is something about the light. Jesus is the light. He drives out the darkness and all fear.
The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? Psalm 27:1
In God, we have rest. Even though we know we are at war, we rest, confident that God will see us through. Perfect love brings us peace. The is no fear in His world. He is in charge and we can rest.
What a gift from our Father. His goal for us will be achieved. Our enemy can’t touch us when we trust in Him.
So … I go to bed confident. I wake up rested and strong. I wake up fearless.
“I stretch myself out. I sleep. Then I’m up again—rested, tall and steady, fearless before the enemy mobs coming at me from all sides.” ~~King David (Psalm 3:5-6)
There is help and then there is real help. Real help comes from God. His blessing is all I need. It clothes me in eternal glory.
May I look for the help that comes from God.
Real help comes from God. Your blessing clothes your people! Psalm 3:8
Our leaders don’t always get it. They plot, the conive, they think they are in control. They defy God and think they are free from Him.
He has shut them up. Jesus came and established His rule and authority. His world and government has triumphed the present world order. Nothing is impossible for Him. He is in control. He has been inaugerated already. He has already won the victory.
Why the big noise, nations? Why the mean plots, peoples?
Earth-leaders push for position,
Demagogues and delegates meet for summit talks,
The God-deniers, the Messiah-defiers:
“Let’s get free of God!
Cast loose from Messiah!”
Heaven-throned God breaks out laughing.
At first he’s amused at their presumption;
Then he gets good and angry.
Furiously, he shuts them up:
“Don’t you know there’s a King in Zion? A coronation banquet
Is spread for him on the holy summit.”
There is a distinction between those that God has redeemed and those he hasn’t. Those in right standing with Him are like the tree of life replanted in Eden. Eternal life is ours. We will never loose our fruit. We will never drop a leaf. We will always blossom.
Another way of seeing it is the road we on with Jesus. The redeemed have our way laid out by God. The wicked are on Skid Row.
May I stay on the road with Jesus and bear fruit for His world.
You’re a tree replanted in Eden, bearing fresh fruit every month, Never dropping a leaf, always in blossom. You’re not at all like the wicked, who are mere windblown dust— Without defense in court, unfit company for innocent people. God charts the road you take. The road they take is Skid Row. Psalm 1:3-6
The first thing I need to do everyday is find out what pleases God. What is going to delight Him? What will cause Him to be “tickled pink”? That is the central question minute by minute. Jesus only did what He saw the Father doing. He taught us to pray, “Your will be done”. And so, I set out to delight in God.
When I am lined up with God and delighting Him, He will give me the what I long for in the depth of my heart and soul. It is that simple.
Take delight in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters.
He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; For You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You anoint my head with oil; My cup runs over.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me All the days of my life; And I will dwell in the house of the LORD Forever.
I am stunned at how our Father sees me compared to how I see myself. He sees me as a friend who He loves to crown with His glory. He honors me. He has made me a ruler in His Kingdom. Not how I see myself some days. Everything He has for me is mine.
May I get in my heart God’s reality. May I see myself as He sees me!!
You have made them a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned them with glory and honor. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet: all flocks and herds, and the animals of the wild, the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. Psalm 8:5-8
Now here is a good word. What should I do? Seek Jesus with my whole heart. David knew this at his core. He was a man after God’s own heart. He knew about the connection emotionally.
Interesting it is about the heart. My connection to God is not primarily about thinking. I am a thinker so this is a challenge for me. God is doing great things.
May I long for a connection with God that brings me supernatural courage. May my emotional connection to Him bring obedience.
I seek you with all my heart; do not let me stray from your commands. Psalm 119:10