“There is always delight to be found and beauty to be encountered, for we live in a world that is never void of the reality of God and his love for us.”
Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – August 20, 2022
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, ESV
What was the happiest day of your life? Perhaps a wedding day or the birth of a child, or the first time you saw the sea or climbed to the top of a mountain? For these moments we are quick to give great thanks, amazed by the depths of joy the world can bring and goodness of God in our lives. Yet on the other hand, I’m sure you can also think of days of unspeakable pain and sorrow. The unexpected death of a loved one. The loss of a job. A failed relationship. On and on the list goes. How do you handle the “bad days”?
As I reflect upon this question, today I am reminded of these beautiful words that come from a traditional Christian prayer for the morning: “In the morning we are filled with Your mercy, O Lord, and we rejoice and delight in all of our days. Let us delight therefore even in the days that you make us lowly and for the years that we have seen evils. And look upon Your servants and upon Your works and lead their sons aright.” Here we are encouraged to “rejoice and delight in all of our days.” Note this prayer doesn’t say delight in all of our days that we deem worthy of delight! We rejoice in all our days.
How is it possible to rejoice in all our days, knowing there are so many that we would love to erase and bury in the deepest parts of our hearts and minds, never to have them surface again? Again, I find this prayer to be overflowing with timeless Christian wisdom. We rejoice because “we are filled with Your mercy.” To be filled with the mercy of God is to be animated and sustained by his love, with his goodness washing over us like wave after wave crashing endlessly upon the sea. And so, if every day is one in which we encounter the love of God, even when it collides with everything that’s wrong in our world and not as it’s meant to be, we can find within it a cause for joy. You are never without an invitation into a life of joy. There is always delight to be found and beauty to be encountered, for we live in a world that is never void of the reality of God and his love for us.
So today, dear friend, choose the path of joy and rejoice in all your days, “even in the days that you make us lowly and for the years that we have seen evils.”
Father, teach us to receive each and every day as a gift from you and an invitation to encounter you in our happiness and in our sorrow, through Christ our Lord. Amen.
At the end of every day this week, ask yourself this question: “What did I encounter today that is cause for joy and delight in the mercy of God?”
Kristene DiMarco: It Is Well
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