God Wants You to Enjoy Life:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice.” (Philippians 4:4).
Can I share with you a truth that to many of you may be revolutionary? God wants you to ENJOY LIFE! It’s true. In the Bible, the words JOY and REJOICE occur over 300 times – and almost always in relation to the people of God. “But let all those rejoice who put their trust in You; Let them ever shout for joy, because You defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You.” (Psalm 5:11). “Be glad in the Lord and rejoice, you righteous; And shout for joy, all you upright in heart.” (Psalm 32:11).
God wants you to ENJOY LIFE. May those words be burned into your heart and soul for all of eternity! Don’t believe the lie from the devil that says, “God doesn’t want you to have fun. You can’t have fun if you’re a Christian. Fun is sin.” That’s not true at all. Now admittedly, certain sins are pleasurable, but the Bible makes it very clear that the pleasure of sin only lasts for a short season. True and lasting joy comes only in the Lord. Proverbs 17:22 says, “A merry heart does good, like medicine, But a broken spirit dries the bones.” As Charles Spurgeon said once, “There is a marvelous medicinal power in joy. Most medicines are distasteful, but this, which is the best of all medicines, is sweet to the taste, and comforting to the soul…What a gracious God we serve, who makes delight to be a duty, and who commands us to rejoice…It is intended that we should be happy.”
Why does God command us to be joyful? First and foremost, I believe it is because He simply desires that we would be happy. Our God is a good God, and He desires the best for His children. The Bible also says, “Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10). God’s joy will give us the strength we need to live life on planet earth. If we don’t have God’s joy, life’s going to be pretty frustrating, depressing, and down-right miserable. Another reason why God wants us to be joyful is so that our lives will be a testimony to others of the life-changing power and grace of God. To quote Spurgeon again, “There are many more flies caught with honey than with vinegar, and there are many more sinners brought to Christ by happy Christians than by (sad or depressed) Christians.” In other words, if we would just get a little happy about our salvation, people would notice our lives and say, “What do you have that I don’t have, and how can I get it?” For indeed the entire Gospel of Jesus Christ is summed up as joy. Remember the words of the Christmas angel to the shepherds who were watching their flocks by night? “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11).
Jesus said to His disciples, “rejoice because your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20). Is this not a reason to sing, and shout, and dance, and celebrate? I once was lost, but I’ve been found. I was blind, but now I see. I was dead, but now I’ve been born again. Rejoice! Rejoice! God wants you to ENJOY LIFE. Away with sour-puss Christians who look like they just got bounced off of the back of a jeep and baptized in vinegar. Let’s rejoice in the Lord, and tell the world the good tidings of great joy about Jesus, the Saviour.
A final note should be said about joy here. The Bible says to rejoice in the Lord. If you go out into the world seeking to find joy in sinful, worldly things, you will find no strength there. The only real and lasting joy is to be found in the Lord. “You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” (Psalm 16:11). Seek Him with all of your heart. Pray. Read your Bible. Worship Him. Fellowship with His people. Pray, “Lord, I need more of your joy.” If you’re in a season of life right now where joy seems far away, then stand on this promise from the Lord. “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” (Psalm 30:5).
Pastor Chris Jordan