Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – August 22, 2018
So the King asked me, ‘Why does your face look so sad when you are not ill? This can be nothing but sadness of heart.’” Nehemiah 2:2
Sadness can creep in like termites and over time erode the foundation of our joy. Or sadness can attack like a bandit and steal our gladness. Either way, it is not fun being sad. Sadness can have a variety of sources. It may be health related. You battle chronic pain that it is almost unbearable. Medication provides temporary relief, but you still struggle.
Sadness solicits when someone you love dearly is suffering and you feel there is nothing else you can do. Your sadness may come from disappointment, deep hurt and letdown, even betrayal. Perhaps your emotions are unstable. Discerning friends see it in your face. Your countenance is downtrodden, unable to mask the disappointment.
The loss of anything we value will contribute to sadness. It may be an opportunity, a friend, a death, money, or the injustice another is experiencing. None of us is immune to sadness. You can deny its reality, but it is lurking to lead us to despair. Dealing with sadness requires more than a mental exercise of trying to think positively. Jesus was in anguish just before His arrest in the garden. But He appealed to His heavenly Father and defaulted to the will of the One who eventually brought gladness.
So express your frustration, heartache, and grief to your heavenly Father. He already knows, but you need to be reminded of His unconditional love and grace. Jesus is there to understand and comfort. He feels your pain. Ask Him to make His joy your strength. This simple expression of humble dependence will not go unnoticed from your sympathizing Savior. Express how you feel to the One who is the creator of your emotions. He cares.
Another remedy for sadness is service to those in need. Visit an AIDS hospital, orphanage, cancer center, or nursing home. Suddenly your sadness seems irrelevant as you become caught up in helping others in their broken state. The smile of one crippled under the weight of disease will infuse your own soul with gratitude and hope.
Or maybe you serve others through practical financial counseling. Their financial state is so ravished they are on the verge of bankruptcy. Yet these financially broken followers of Jesus have a peace because their hope is in God, not money. Their pure heart makes your petty preoccupation over the loss of some stuff seem small. Your obsession shifts from your little loss to the greatness of God’s blessing.
Your service may find you helping in the church’s preschool. You may encourage your spouse by serving together. The children’s pure hearts and funny expressions will bring joy to your soul. You cannot help but smile around children, especially grandchildren. So reengage with God, people, or something bigger than yourself. Over time fear will be replaced with hope, frustration with joy, and sadness with gladness.
“Surely you have granted him eternal blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence” (Psalm 21:6).
Heavenly Father, my heart is sad over all who have drifted from their first love. Bring us all back to a deep love relationship with Jesus, in His name, I pray, amen.
Am I seeking joy from Jesus in my sad state? Whom can I make glad who is sad?
Express how you feel to the One who is the Creator of your emotions. God cares. #WisdomHunters #sadheart
4 minutes- Matthew West:
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