Unspeakable Joy Devotional

23rd July

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Why You Are Not Happy…..I have seen so many books and articles lately with this title. The world seems to have so much to offer to make us happy. They are all temporary fixes. We can become miserable Christians with a foot in both worlds. We have one eye on heaven and one on earth. We call on the name of Christ, but are still trying to find security, satisfaction, pleasure, or fulfillment from this world. We are riding the fence. And we aren’t happy.

Is that you? The only way to have joy is to say a full “Yes” to God. Which means saying “No” to the world.

Joy is the emotion of salvation. 1 Peter 1:8 “Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, through now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.” Quite a few believers struggle to experience joy.

If we are not absolutely convinced that God alone is good, we will not be able to say “No” to other gods that promise joy but deliver sorrow. We don’t dare to imagine that there is even a sliver of good apart from God and his will for our lives. Not a shred.

The Psalms drive this truth home. Psalm 16:2 “O my soul, thou hast said unto the Lord, thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee.”

And again, Psalm 73:25 “Whom have I in heaven but thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire beside thee.”

And again, Psalm 142:5 “I cried unto thee, O Lord: I said, Thou art my refuge and my portion in the land of the living.”

James writes in James 1:16-17 “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.”

Every ounce of good in this world comes from God. Nothing can possibly be good unless it comes from God. A joyful Christian believes this truth. He banks his life and his joy on it.

Satan tempts us to think we can find something good and satisfying apart from God. But we must declare a strong, resounding “No” to anything that promises good without him. The essence of sin is looking for good outside of God and his will. That is how mother Eve was deceived. Genesis 3:6 “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.”

So choose today whom you will serve Joshua 24:15 “And if it seem evil unto you to serve the Lord, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”

Half-hearted Christians are not happy Christians. Hope in God, and don’t run after other gods. That is the path to joy. (Johnston)

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