Philippians – Radical Joy
A picture from a few years ago popped up on my Facebook timeline this morning that reminded me of dear family members and friends who have passed from this life to the next. I know exactly where they are…with Jesus. I rejoice through smiling tears this morning. Tears are because I miss them. The smile is there because of the hope we have…God’s best…living with Him forever. I celebrate God this morning! I will celebrate Him all day long.
How about the people still here? Do we love, appreciate, praise God for those who are still here with us? Have we celebrated their existence by being with them and telling them how much we love them? In doing so, we celebrate God.
How about those EGRs, (Extra Grace Required) people who annoy us with their selfishness but need love and care all the same? Let’s celebrate God for them, too! How about those who need prayer often? Let’s celebrate God for them! We need each other. God knew that. We learn from each other as we relate to and love God first, then others. Let’s celebrate God for bringing us together. Most of, let’s revel in God for saving us with a plan He had from the beginning of time!
Paul takes a moment in his letter to the Philippians to say these things and more. Can’t you just get along?, We hear Paul say between the lines. This is God’s best for you. I love you, says Paul and I want the best for you, too. “Don’t waver. Stay on track, steady in God.”
“Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, REVEL in him!” Paul seems to shout! (Rejoice and again I say rejoice! is the familiar words in other translations.) I like celebrate and revel! This means go beyond our typical “Yea, God” to throwing a huge welcome for Him in us with hugs all around, getting along with each other, agreeing with each other about who God is and what He has done, is doing and will do!” It is remembering God each day. It is celebrating with all that is in us! To revel in Him is to throw a mental party in your soul knowing you will see Him face to face one day. But for now…celebrate God…all day long and into the night! Smile through the tears for soon all tears will be gone, “wiped away” by God when we pass from this life to the next.
Read. Be blessed. Rejoice. Celebrate and revel in God!
Philippians 4, The Message
My dear, dear friends! I love you so much. I do want the very best for you. You make me feel such joy, fill me with such pride. Don’t waver. Stay on track, steady in God.
2 I urge Euodia and Syntyche to iron out their differences and make up. God doesn’t want his children holding grudges.
3 And, oh, yes, Syzygus, since you’re right there to help them work things out, do your best with them. These women worked for the Message hand in hand with Clement and me, and with the other veterans—worked as hard as any of us. Remember, their names are also in the Book of Life.
4-5 Celebrate God all day, every day. I mean, revel in him! Make it as clear as you can to all you meet that you’re on their side, working with them and not against them. Help them see that the Master is about to arrive. He could show up any minute!
Dear Heavenly Father,
We celebrate, rejoice, revel in You today…as always! You are God and we are not. You loved us first and will always be with us. Thank you for Your Presence in our lives. Thank you for guiding us over rough patches and disappointments. Thank you for saving us. Thank you for unconditional love, mercy and grace. Thank you for Your Word that tells Your Story and is about You! It all about You…not us. Thank you for protection and provisions. Thank you for blessings beyond our wildest dreams. Thank you for wanting only the best for us. God, I celebrate You with all my heart, mind and soul. May Your Holy Spirit fill us to overflow with praises today for You and at the same time wash away and cleanse every dark spot in us. Continue to transform me. Transform Your church. Transform the world.
In Jesus Name, Amen!
And I’m singing…
Rejoice in the Lord always
And again, I say rejoice!
Rejoice int he Lord always
And again, I say rejoice!
And again I say rejoice….