“Only fear the Lord, and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you.”
1 Samuel 12:24
Most of the time, I don’t express joy. Society often tells men that it’s not cool to be expressive, which makes it difficult to be openly joyful. It’s socially acceptable to express anger, but rarely do I express true joy. I can count on my two hands the times of true joy I’ve had and expressed: two being when my daughters were born and the others being times I witnessed thousands of people come to know the Lord as their Savior in India. My emotions are usually right down the middle when it comes to joy. I neither over-express nor under-express joy.
In 1 Samuel 12, Samuel is giving a stern talking to the children of Israel. They again have forsaken the Lord, they are worshipping idols, and have gone after vain things that profit nothing. Then in verse 24, Samuel made it known that the people needed to fear the Lord, serve the Lord in truth with all their heart, and consider ALL the great things God had done for them.
Let’s fast forward in time, and consider all the great things God has done for us. You and I have the luxury of knowing that God’s only Son, Jesus, was born as a man. We know now that He came to be with us, and he came to heal us. In Matthew 1:23, Jesus is referred to as Emmanuel, which means “God with us.” How often we (and I) often forget this! Jesus took my whipping. He willingly claimed my punishment. I don’t have to suffer death, hell and the grave. I’m free from sin!! I’m free from bondage!!
My debt was paid!! I’m completely forgiven. Period.
Regardless of what society tells me, I have reason to be joyful. I can consider the great things that God has done for me and find true joy in that understanding. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you in feeling the joy that comes with the knowledge of knowing Christ as Savior.
This Christmas season, express the joy of the Lord.
Lord, forgive me for not having joy like I should. Help me, because sometimes I need to be reminded of what you did for me. Thank you for your ultimate sacrifice that give me reason to be joyful. Help me to have and express true joy. In Jesus’ name I pray, Amen.