TWO SIMPLE PRAYERS BROUGHT UNBELIEVABLE JOY
I am probably the only person in S.C. who loves absolutely loves "a good snow storm!" I remember one year praying for five feet of snow only to learn my best friend also prayed for four feet of snow.
Within a few days a silent stillness on a long winter's night dropped falling snow flakes that grew into many, many feet of cold, spotless white snow drifts.
I suspect God had delighted in our prayers with intellect and an imagination of wonderful memories for the two of us. A walk through this winter wonderland flooded our hearts with such "Joy the Lord had bestowed upon us!"
JESUS SPEAKS OF JOY IN HIS PARABLES
Throughout the Gospels, Jesus talks about such joy in much the same way we experienced that fabulous winter's night: the result of waiting for and finding the things we deeply desire after a period of struggle. In the parable of the lost sheep, the shepherd is thrilled when he finds the one that was lost and can return to the 99. (See: LUKE 15:1-7)
In the parable of the hidden treasure, joy propels the man not only to receive the treasure, but also to buy the field it's buried in. (See: MATTHEW 13:44) And what about the woman who loses a coin and searches until she finds it again. Then, not only is she filled with joy, but she also invites her neighbors to rejoice with her! (See: LUKE 15:8-10)
A REVELATION OF GREAT JOY
Every parable points us to the future and to the exhilaration and wonder we will experience when the kingdom is a last fulfilled. These parables are spoke by our Lord to point sinners to repentance and accepting Christ Jesus as their Savior.
God's purposes being accomplished, and Christ, our one true treasure, being broadcasted to all, at last! What joy there will genuinely be when God's kingdom comes to us at last!!
TRUSTING, DELIGHTING AND COMITTING
It's similar to a long-term annuity, that is received when one has planned for retirement. The revenue is a type of insurance policy that allows for tax-deferred savings, and specifically with the long-term ones, a person makes a significant up-front investment for a larger payoff down the road.
Very often we see joy this way: a future payout in heaven after a lifetime of adversity here on earth. The cycle of suffering, waiting, and joy seems embedded in God's plan for redemption: first, when Jesus came as a baby, and ultimately when He comes again.
Nonetheless, joy doesn't point us only to the future, God delights in giving us the desires of our hearts, just as He gave my friend and I the snow storm of a lifetime! If we TRUST God, DELIGHT ourselves in Him and COMITT our ways unto the Lord our God... He will bring those desires to us! (See: PSALM 37:3-5)
AWAITING THE BLESSED HOPE WITH JOY
I suppose that is why my friend and I enjoyed that very special winter's day. I didn't realize the joy in those quiet moments of falling snow until my friend and I talked and realized we had both prayed a similar prayer that was the desires of our hearts!
The same is true for all of us in God's kingdom. Even during the smothering heat and humidity of summer, afflictions, and sufferings, we can await Christ's return with hope, confidence, and most of all--JOY!
This song will surely lift your spirits to new heights of JOY!!
JOY in My Heart - Karen Peck and New River
with - Joy Gardner