“This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24
The Little Dot
While speaking to a group of young men, a teacher took a large white sheet of paper and made a black dot in the center using a marking pen. He then asked the group to explain what they observed by holding up the piece of paper in front of them. One man quickly lifted his hands and said, “I see a black mark.” “right, do you see anything else?” responded the teacher. The hall went quiet, and nobody saw anything else apart from the dot on the piece of paper. The teacher, expressing his surprise, said, “I’m quite astonished, the most important thing is the sheet of paper has gone completely unnoticed”.
The story above teaches us that small disappointments or painful events in life can cause us to lose sight of the abundant blessings we receive from the Lord’s hand. As represented by the piece of paper, there is more to our lives than the small dot. The text from Psalms 118:24 reminds us that happiness is a result of circumstances but joy and rejoicing are from the Lord. Happiness is only available for a limited period, but the joy that the Lord gives is forever, and it is available at all times (Nehemiah 8:10).
Everyday Is Today
This day is a new day, and it is a day of peace that comes from God’s hand even in the face of danger. When you feel that your days are almost cut short, God adds a joyous day to your life. The “day” refers to the time that God’s people remember His faithfulness. The two significant challenges to joy are adversity and ingratitude. In the face of adversity, we forget that God is bigger than our problems. Adversity magnifies the size of the issues. But as we praise, the spirit of God fills us, our faith rises, and we feel the chains falling and our prison doors falling (Acts 16).
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The second challenge to joy is ingratitude. An ungrateful person is always moody, sad, and entitled. As Christians, we might have a proclivity to treat God just like we do other people. When we do this, we not only become ungrateful for what He has given us, but we become greedy for more. As a result, we lose our joy. People who are more optimistic and upbeat are healthier.
It is not always about “us”. We might get so caught up in our plans and thoughts we forget the fruits of walking in the truth of the word of God. With every waking dawn, God has new love, power, mercy, and a task for us. The task of rejoicing in what He has made should cause us to be “occupied” by the influence of Christ. Jesus said, “These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full,” (John 15:11). Today may be the last day we have the opportunity to demonstrate our goodness and love to one another. Let us be bold and not lose heart, look to the joy that the Lord brings despite our current light and temporary tribulations (James 1:2-4).