April 29: “Joy in Jesus”

6 Minute Read + Scripture readings

Today’s Bible Reading:

Numbers 6
Psalms 40-41
Song of Solomon 4
Hebrews 4

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

“Let all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; let those who love your salvation continually say, ‘The LORD is great!’”
Psalm 40:16 (CSB)

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

There have been times during my years in ministry when I wanted to yell, “Stop!” and then hit the “Reset” button. I looked around and it seemed clear that we were just doing religious stuff without really enjoying our God.

You’ve never felt this way? Then the next time your church sings a song with lyrics like, “Oh, how I love Jesus” or “There are sweet expressions on each face,” or “I’ve got joy like a river in my soul,” look at the faces of those who are singing. Most of their expressions aren’t matching the words they are singing. They are just going through the motions and mindlessly singing the songs.

But, to be completely transparent, I need to aim the spotlight at my own sinful heart. There have also been plenty of times in my own life when I was being a “good Christian” and going through the motions but my heart was cold and indifferent toward the Lord. I wasn’t happy in Jesus.

Did you know that God has always intended for us to enjoy Him? To be happy in Him? God the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit have enjoyed infinite happiness in Their relationship for all of eternity. God created people not because He was lonely but because He wanted others to enter into His happiness within the Trinity.

David, “a man after God’s own heart” (Acts 13:22), wrote Psalm 40. He was happy in his God. Just listen to his words again.

Psalm 40:16 (CSB): “Let all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; let those who love your salvation continually say, ‘The LORD is great!’”

Friend, are you happy in Jesus! Do you love Him!

I can hear the guys right now. “Matt, I really struggle to ‘love’ Jesus because it just feels weird to be told to love a man.”

Well, guys, do you love your job? Do you love your hobby? Do you love your brother(s) or your son(s)? Do you love your favorite dessert? All that means is that you enjoy something so much that it brings you happiness.

So, when you sing, “Oh, how I love Jesus,” don’t let your heart get all mushy. Realize that those words can really mean, “Oh, I enjoy my relationship with Jesus so much that it brings me incredibly happiness!”

* * * * * * * * * *

Lord Jesus, You have never, ever intended for us to simply go about doing religious stuff. In fact, the church in Laodicea was doing religious stuff and yet You were outside the church, knocking on the door, desiring to come in (Revelation 3:20). They thought they were worshipping You and You weren’t even in the room. So, help me, Lord Jesus, to not simply do religious stuff but to be motivated by a desire to know You and to enjoy You more and more in my pursuit of happiness in You. Amen.

tim-marshall-K2u71wv2eI4-unsplash
Photo by Tim Marshall on Unsplash

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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