Saturday, March 19, 2011

Love and Joy

But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Protect them, so all who love your name may be filled with joy. For you bless the godly, O Lord, surrounding them with your shield of love. Psalm 5: 11-12 NLT

Too many times we think that God's protection means we will not suffer and we will be rewarded materially. But these verses remind us that the rewards given to those who are in right relationship with God are joy and love.

Joy: Let all who take refuge in you (depend upon you, declare you as their savior) rejoice, let them forever sing with joy. In your protection, in loving you, will they be filled with joy. Filled with enough joy that it makes you want to sing God's praises eternally!

Love: Bless the godly and surround them with your shield of love. Surrounded by love!

Although we agree that this sounds nice, is that what we are really wanting God to do for us? How many of us are longing for a relationship with God that is rewarded with peace and prosperity? Sure, we can trust God but we are also looking for God to take away suffering in our lives. Can joy and love be found in the same moment as suffering? Was Jesus feeling joy and love when he gave his life for us?

I don't have the answers. But I do understand that what God wants to reward us with is different from what we want to be rewarded.

God, protect us and fill us with your joy. Surround us with your shield of love. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Copyright 2011 Amelia G. Sims

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