Tag: Rejoice

A Life of Godliness and Gratitude

David Wilkersonby David Wilkerson

“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-17).

God’s children should make it a matter of conscience to rejoice in him at all times and in every circumstance. Rejoicing is not our choice; it is God’s command! If we treat these words as an option, we undermine God’s imperative to us.

Until God has our delight, he really does not have our heart. There are three steps that will help us maintain a stance of rejoicing in our Savior:

  • Put aside every obstacle that interferes with rejoicing
  • Persuade yourself that rejoicing is necessary
  • Practice rejoicing forever

This definitely will not be easy and you sometimes will think it doesn’t make sense. Whether the world crumbles or stands, whether we lose or keep everything and everyone precious to us, the Lord himself remains the source of our satisfaction. “Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).

God created a place in his children for joy. This place will be filled with something, either with the toys and trivia of worldly achievement and accumulation or with heavenly things of the Creator. There will always be carnal cravings that lure us away from God. “Each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed” (James 1:14).

Those who have had a new, divine nature put into them by God are not satisfied with things of the world anymore. A change of heart implies a change of desire — a pure heart after God wants what he wants. “Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous! For praise from the upright is beautiful” (Psalm 33:1).

A practical side of rejoicing is that it cannot be sustained if it is not continually exercised. Do not neglect this great portion of God’s salvation lest it become shriveled and crippled and too sluggish to sing out love songs to Jesus. But constant use will make it a strong fiber of your soul; willing and able to control every other emotion. Make the choice today to seek after the serene life of godliness and gratitude.

by David Wilkerson

A wonderful example of faith in adversity

David Wilkersonby David Wilkerson

When Paul wrote his letter to the Philippians, he was being held in a Roman prison, his feet chained to a soldier on either side. The conditions were horrible and Paul suffered great indignities, with no time alone and no freedoms.

Think about it. Here was a man who had been very active, traveling the open road and high seas to meet and fellowship with God’s people. Paul drew his greatest joy from visiting the churches he had established throughout that region of the world. But now he was chained down, literally bound to the hardest, most profane men alive.

Some of the Christians who knew Paul began to murmur that he was bringing disgrace on the gospel because of his situation. But Paul was intent on finding God’s purpose for allowing him to come to this point. Instead of asking, “Why did this happen to me?” he decided to discover what his reaction should be. This servant of God made up his mind: “I can’t change where I am but I know my steps are ordered by the Lord. Therefore, I’m going to magnify Christ and be a testimony while I’m in these chains.”

“Now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life or by death” (Philippians 1:20). Paul was in no way resigned or indifferent to his circumstances but he was determined that God’s Word would be validated by his reaction to his affliction. “Knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel … Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice” (1:17-18).

Paul’s attitude is a wonderful demonstration of how we should react to adverse circumstances. It is possible to waste all our tomorrows anxiously waiting to be delivered out of our suffering, but if that becomes our focus, we will miss the miracle and joy of being emancipated in our trial. Paul’s word to the Philippians was, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” (4:4). And I say to you, “Rejoice in the Lord always!”

by David Wilkerson