Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in the heart! Psalm 32:11
Everywhere a person looks there appears to be trouble. The news is filled with negative events, deaths, murders, crime, suffering, lies, theft, and more. People are walking in fear of their lives, fear of being robbed or killed.
Along with all of the bad news being spread, there are the problems of life. There is sickness, debt, divorce, and more that plague the lives of many people.
Finding something to be happy about appears to be elusive to many people in the world. They look to drugs and comedians to find a place to laugh and be happy. They seek things to remove them from the troubles in this world.
David found a reason to rejoice and be glad with a song in the heart. He had many struggles and troubles throughout his life, yet he would rejoice and sing songs of praise to God. He found forgiveness from God.
Jesus promised every believer that he would have a lot of troubles in this world. There would be pain and suffering, yet, the believer has a reason to rejoice.
Every pain and suffering that a person goes through here on this earth is temporary. It will only last for a short time in light of eternity.
There is one trouble that a person goes through, however, that is not temporary if not dealt with correctly. That trouble is condemnation of sin. It is a death sentence.
The good news is that Jesus has paid for that sin and is willing to forgive and forget that sin. This is of eternal value. Being given the gift of forgiveness is the greatest thing that any believer can ever receive.
Getting forgiveness should cause every person to rejoice and be glad. It should put a song of praise on his lips. It has eternal value, greater than anything on this earth.
Seek out God’s forgiveness for any and every sin you have ever committed. Jesus is right there willing to forgive you, since He paid for those sins.
Now, think about what Jesus has done for you. Let that sink into your heart. Now you have a reason to rejoice and be glad, regardless of what troubles you have in your life. The greatest trouble–eternal death–has been wiped away.
Sing now praises of thanksgiving and worship to the God for what He has done for you.
I pray today that you will know the forgiveness Jesus provides; that you will find joy in worshipping God; that you will be glad in the Lord; and that you will sing songs of praise to God.
“Consider now: Who, being innocent, has ever perished? Where were the upright ever destroyed?” Job 4:7
When something bad happens to a person, many believe that the person must have done something wrong. Often it is that he must have made a bad choice that brought on the bad situation in his life. According to the world, a person is in control of his whole life, bad things should never occur to a good person.
Once something happens bad to a person, many begin to question the why of what happened. They start searching for answers wanting to solve the problem. In this process the wrong answer is often believed.
Job had done nothing wrong and was notated as living an upright and innocent life, yet, he lost everything. One of his friends, Eliphaz, came by with some counsel on what had occurred. Part of his suggestion was that Job was guilty of some sin, because no one innocent or upright has ever been destroyed like this.
While Eliphaz’s thoughts seem logical, they fall short of understanding God’s ways. There have been many people who were innocent and upright who have perished. No, they did not perish for eternity, but they perished here on this earth. They were killed or became sick to the point of death or something else bad occurred.
Take a look at Jesus, perfect and holy, yet He suffered and died. In a sense He was destroyed. His body on this earth was killed. However, despite the killing, because He was perfect and holy, He rose again and was not destroyed eternally.
The believer in Jesus is also made holy and righteous before God through the power of Jesus. He may suffer and die here on this earth, but it is only a temporary death, he will be raised again to life.
As a believer, do not be quick to judge yourself or others for problems occurring in life. Allow God to examine you and point out any sins you may have that may have brought on the suffering, but also accept that it may not be caused by your sins.
God does allow suffering and pain in the lives of His children. Don’t give the false counsel of blaming personal sin for personal problems always. Sometimes it is God working in your life as He was in Job’s life.
You cannot always see behind the scenes as to what God is doing or why He allows something. However, you can trust Him fully.
I pray today that you will trust God’s work in your life; that God will reveal any sin in your life; that God will strengthen you during sufferings; and that God will make you more like Jesus.
“Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy and disciplined.” Titus 1:8
As Paul opens his letter to Titus, he gives some instructions for a person who is an over-seer. An over-seer is the pastor or lead elder of the church. He starts with some things that he should not be, then in this verse gives some things he should be. Although he is talking about the over-seer, these very same things can be applied to every believer.
Five things are listed that one should be. The first is being hospitable. This is being open to allowing people to come and see you. You have an open door on your house for visitors. Do you shun people coming over? Or do you welcome them with open arms?
Next is loving what is good. There are many things in this world, and not all of them are good. By good, it means: does it glorify God; or bring you and others closer to God; does it make you more like Jesus? Or do these things pull you away from God?
Next is self-controlled. Are you controlling what you say, think, and do? No one can make you do anything you do not want to do in your heart. Do not allow others to control you.
Then being upright. This is living your life for God. When someone looks at your life what will they see? Is there corruption, deception, and sin? Or is it Jesus? Are you a person of your word?
Next is holy. Are you living as Jesus would? Are you staying away from sin in every form? If God looks at your life what does He see?
Finally is being disciplined. This comes alongside self-control. Do you hold yourself accountable for your actions? Do you keep yourself from falling into sinful ways? Beat your old sinful self down and live for Jesus.
These are a few ways that every believer should be living. This would bring honor to God and lift up the name of Jesus. Not every believer is living like this, which brings dishonor to Jesus and all believers.
How are you living your life today?
I pray today that you will examine your life to see how you live for Jesus; that God will reveal areas that you need to improve on; that you will bring honor to the name of Jesus by how you live; and that God will use you to touch the lives of others.