Updated: Jun 9, 2018
The morning started out like any other morning. I woke up, had my coffee, really woke up, then prepared to clean up for the day. I did notice that one thing was different, my attitude. Rather than putting on some Toby Mac get-myself-going music, I felt compelled to put on the Bee Gees. Now there is nothing wrong with that mind you, the problem was I didn’t FEEL like including my Lord this morning. Why is that, I wondered. So, I prayed. I invited God into my day. I asked Him to be with me, to do the day with me.
When my husband and I did our devotion today, Philippians 4: 1-5 was the scripture. Verse 4 jumped out at me, “Rejoice in the Lord always! Again, I say rejoice!” (emphasis mine) I thought deeply about it. I had to admit sometimes I just didn’t feel like rejoicing. Of course, there are valid times when we find it a challenge to rejoice in the Lord, like when we lose a loved one, deal with illness, or struggle with some sin. But that doesn’t mean we can’t. We won’t be singing and dancing mind you, but we can quietly praise God for being in our lives and helping us through. Don’t shut Him out when you need Him the most!
I have to say, every time I’ve included God in my day, something beautiful happens. It may be a small thing, like a call from a friend with scripture for me. Or it may be just a moment of quiet clarity in the middle of utter chaos. In fact, it usually is a “small” thing. But those little, seemingly insignificant things, become HUGE when God is in it!
That’s why God tells us to rejoice! Our sin has been forgiven! Free of the separation from sin, and death; He longs to interact with you and me, of all people! Why in the world would anyone ever want to shut that down? But sometimes we do. Is God like a light switch with an “off” and “on” mode? I think not!
Willie Nelson wrote a song called “Always on My Mind.” The lyrics go, “Maybe I didn’t love you quite as often as I should have. And maybe I didn’t treat you quite as good as I should have. If I made you feel second best, girl I’m sorry I was blind. But you were always on my mind. You were always on my mind.” I wonder if Wille Nelson had an “On/Off” switch? He must have! Because if someone is truly always on my mind that means I’m being mindful of them. Right? Maybe it’s just another part of us being human. So we don’t know how to love perfectly, it’s true. But God does!
While the people in Jesus’ time were mulling about, having their day progress, probably much like mine today… They were probably enjoying their morning, their families and friends. Some were probably doing terrible things, just as people are doing terrible things today. Others back then even had murdering Jesus on their hearts. Yet God’s word says, “As the time approached for Him to be taken up to heaven, Jesus resolutely set out for Jerusalem.” Luke 9:51 See, we can sing about someone always being on our mind, but we WERE and are, always on God’s mind. The Contemporary English Bible says, “He made up His mind to go to Jerusalem.” God made up His mind to love and sacrifice Himself for us before time even began! He had to because Jesus has always been!
Jesus existed outside of time and entered time for our salvation. “In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God.” John 1:1 I write to express myself. God reveals Jesus through His written word. Jesus is God’s perfect expression of Himself! Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'? John 14:9 God sent Jesus so He could have a relationship with you and I. The thing is, Jesus is a gentleman. He won’t force His way into our lives. He patiently waits until we invite Him. We only have each of our days of this lifetime, to do that.
So maybe we humans can’t love God “as good as we should have” but God says we are to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Duet. 6:5 It is possible to love God. We just need to try. He knows we aren’t perfect. So, when the enemy comes along, tempting you and I to turn our hearts off, we would do well to ask God to just tell him to “Buzz off!” God gave His best for us. He deserves no less than our best, our hearts, our souls. and all our strength in return. May He reign in all our days, always.