Rejoicing Always is a Choice
Part of maintaining your joy is finding a reason (God’s purpose) to rejoice in everything, even in the worst conditions of impending danger and disappointment.
“In this, I rejoice,” remarked Paul when his imprisonment resulted in the furtherance of the gospel. He could have chosen to dwell on the appalling display of envy and strife by which some were propelled to preach the gospel. Instead, he focused on the ultimate – the fact that the good news of Jesus Christ was spreading fast and far in spite of his imprisonment.
Beloved, the Lord so wills that you maintain your peace and joy while He works out His sovereign purposes even if you are seemingly in chains. Do not dwell on your chains; do not dwell on the seeming loss that is being accrued by reason of your immobility and incapacitation; do not dwell on the unbecoming behaviour of mischievous folks. Rather, focus on what God is doing and rejoice in it.
Rejoicing Always is Knowledge-base
“Rejoice always,” Paul later instructed the Philippians, having offered his readers a sublime model, “Again I say, “rejoice!””
Besides, when he mentioned to them that he knew that the things which were happening during his imprisonment were going to turn out for his deliverance, he spoke out of an understanding of the ways of God. He knew that God rides the storms to display His glory.
Paul knew that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them that are the called according to His purpose” (Romans 8:28). Like Job, he knew that “My redeemer lives” (Job 19:25) Like David, he knew that God was with him even in the valley of the shadow of death (Psalm 23:4).
What do you know? On what beliefs and truths about God’s character are you anchoring your hope to find rest for your soul amidst the storms of life?
Furthermore, Paul understood the two cogent mechanisms through which God would orchestrate his deliverance: prayer and supply of the Spirit. Ours is to pray; it is God’s part to supply us with His Spirit to help steady our gaze on Him and His glory as well as strengthen and comfort us through our trying times while He works out His purposes.
Whereas Elijah ignored this principle at the threat of Jezebel and succumbed to depression, Jesus leveraged it when He came close to the cross. So, we see that a prayerless Christian becomes a fainting Christian. We are only powerful when we stay connected.
Rejoicing Always is based on daily supplies of the Spirit
In fact, most importantly, there is a ministration of the Spirit that we need daily to keep our hearts guarded while we navigate through life, lest the evil waters should find their way into our boats.
Are you staying connected to receive your daily portion or are you fainting? Are you waxing strong or growing weak? Are you burning or fizzling out?