Posted by: mikenicholsblog | September 12, 2010

a joyful journey

Joy on the journey” are words that will resonate with anyone who is serious about their faith. The Father’s design is for those who have accepted His gift of salvation and eternal life in Christ, to live with joy. But somehow our journey gets in the way. We all have unique stories about the struggles we face along our particular path. It may be our job, health issues, church problems, marital strife, or rebellious children, just to name a few. And during the expected twists and turns of our journey, joy is often squeezed out. Although we may not see many great examples of joy, it is absolutely available, or the Father would not have said, “Be joyful always” (I Thessalonians 5:16).

As I contemplate these words, it’s easy for me to become discouraged because I certainly have not mastered the art of joy on the journey. The real issue before us, though, is not mastery or perfection, but the progress we are making. Too much of my journey has been about me trying to serve God with misplaced values. Noble as they were, praying to get things, studying the Word without getting to know God, and serving Him in my own strength didn’t produce what I believe is the depth of joy the Father has made available. Your journey may be similar, and the good news is that God is the designer of joy, so let’s seek His blueprint.

Psalm 62:1
My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him.

Psalm 73:25-26
Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.

Psalm 119:72
The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.

Is it possible to find rest in God alone? …Yes!  Is it possible to cherish His Word more than silver and gold? … Yes!  Is it possible to live with a deep conviction of His strength even when my heart grows weak? … Yes!  The result:  JOY.

In my journey, I am learning to seek Him before I seek what He can provide.  It is so easy for worship and growth to become just a religious duty. But knowing our Father deeply, and resting in Him comes from a passion of the heart. When our emphasis is religious duty, we waste so much energy and miss so much of His power.  Decide with me that you will discipline yourself to seek Him.  As you dedicate your life to knowing Him through the pages of His book, rest assured that He will create joy on your journey.

Today is a new day, and the Father wants to help you navigate a joyful journey.

You have made us for yourself, Oh Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.” Augustine

As you start this new day, prepare for His joyful rest … Seek Him!

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