Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Rejoice In The Lord Always

Philippians 4:4

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!

Photo on 7-6-16 at 3.42 PMI know people that always seem to see the bad side of things. The market just hit all-time highs and I’m reading people who think a crash or correction is just around the corner. I’ve read articles on the Internet and listened to the advice of my financial advisor and feel safe that the market will not act like 2008. By the way – I agree that we should take precautions about a down turn in the market. I’ve taken precautions with a sell price on my stocks if they drop.

I know people that always seem to see the bad side of things. While listening to my favorite sports radio channel – you’d think the Orioles were in last place the way some people talk about their troubles and how they MUST trade for a starter. They’re actually in first place by two games and with a little improvement from their current starters – they just might finish in first. I happen to believe they will do better by keeping their young players and playing out this season with what they have currently in house. We’ve been burnt the last few years by trading young promising players for rentals!

I know people that always seem to see the bad side of things. I remember when my brother pruned his fruit trees in his backyard. I was one who thought he had killed them. I even wrote about it on my blog page. But they not only came back (from the dead) – they have flourished and have borne more fruit than before. Sometimes we need to be pruned before we can flourish.

Today’s passage calls us to rejoice – always. Even during the tough times – we should rejoice. Even when things seem the worst – we should rejoice. Here is today’s passage in partial context. Philippians 4:4–9 – Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.

A clergy friend of mine tweeted this saying this week. I’m a follower of Jesus: the guy who healed people, raised them from the dead, and promised them new life. Optimism is my only real option! We should think the best – we should seek after the things of God rather than the things of the world – the things of the sinful.

Instead of always seeing the negative – or the downside of things – we should rejoice in the Lord and seek – daily – to serve Him and rejoice. That doesn’t mean ignore troubles – they will come – but it suggests that we should focus on these words: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.

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July 15, 2016 - Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , , ,

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