Joy: Let it Loose!
I love cake! So does my youngest daughter, Jill. In fact, every time I tell her that I am performing a wedding ceremony, she says, “Bring me some cake!”
Cakes are great. A cake says, “Happy”, “I think a lot of you”or “Let’s celebrate you!”Cakes bring joy and smiles, don’t they?
The Bible tell us in Nehemiah 8:10 that “…thejoyof the Lord is ourstrength.”
God’s joy in a relationship with us is a strength for us. You see, His joy given to us and received by us changes us!
Maybe in the middle of Covid-19, we need to understand that we can live in a joy that changes us?
There is a story in 2 Sam. 6:12-22 where King David is returning the Ark of God to Jerusalem in such a state of joy that he literally dances his clothes off. Oooops! (I am not recommending that we dance that hard!)
AND, that once the Ark is in its rightful place, David serves cake to all of the people of the kingdom, JOY!
How do we live in the Joy of the Lord where His Joy is our strength?How do we live in “Let Loose Joy”like King David?
Get our attitude right.
Our attitude determines where we live...where our heart settles. The attitude we choose, determines the where we go emotionally, relationally and spiritually.
In John 15:11, Jesus said, - “These things I have spoken to you that MY JOY might remain in you and that YOUR JOY might be FULL!”
Joy given & received changes us!
CS Lewis said, “Joy is the serious business of heaven.”
Where is the business of our heart? What attitude dominates or dictates our lives?
Is it a positive attitude(goodness/kindness, loving, caring, serving, happiness, joyful) ORnegative(fearful, stressed, sour, harsh, critical)?
The great news is that we can choose our attitude. Philippians 4:8 “Whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, let your mind dwell on these things.”
If our mind lives in good things our attitude follows!
Put God first.
As the Ark of God was coming into Jerusalem, David made sure that worship and sacrifice were a priority.
Does our life celebrate God?
If our lives are about God…His purpose, His Kingdom, His Word, His Son, His church then we reap a life of His character!
My Bible says that His character is Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Gentleness. Faithfulness. Self-Control.
Robert Rainey- "Joy is the flag which is flown from the castle of the heart when the King is in residence there.”
Who is the king of our castle? Until Jesus is our king, the true Joy flag doesn’t fly.
Don’t hold back.
Reverence and joy are contagious.
David didn’t let the crowd constrain his joy.
The Bible commands us to sing, shout, dance and praise the Lord!
Ps. 135:3 “Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good; sing to his name, for it is pleasant!”
Ps. 149:1-3 “Praise the Lord! Sing to the Lord a new song, and His praise in the congregation of the godly ones. Let them praise His name with dancing. Let them sing praises to the Lord with timbrel and lyre.”
Ps. 150:6 Let EVERYTHING that has breath praise the Lord!”
In joy and praise, David and the people danced, leaped, sang, shouted and played trumpetsbefore the Lordfor the whole world to see!
David did so with “all his might!”
When was the last time we worshipped the Lord with all of our might?
People who “let loose joy” don’t let moments of joy slip by unnoticed, unannounced or uncelebrated.
Have you ever noticed that happy and joyful people are the ones who find every reason to laugh, sing or dance?
When joyful people start celebrating, they take everyone along with them.
David didn’t let the moment of bringing the Ark of God, just live in the minds of the people, he gave them a gift to remember. He gave 3 cakes to everyone!
It was as if David was saying, “Eat in joy. Be filled and satisfied with joy. Share the cake of joy with others.”
Why? Because joy given & received changes us.
If I said,“God is good”, what would you say? Probably “All the time!”
Then if I said, “All the time.”You would probably say, “God is good!”
If we really believe that, then there is not a moment when we can’t celebrate Him…not a moment when we can’t have cake (figuratively)! Even in Covid! Every day, find a reason for JOY!