Devotions on Emotions (and Scripture) by the First Pres Pastors
A reflection on the following scriptures
Trust in the Lord, and do good; so you will live in the land, and enjoy security.
Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.
He will make your vindication shine like the light, and the justice of your cause like the noonday.
Be still before the Lord, and wait patiently for him; do not fret over those who prosper in their way, over those who carry out evil devices.
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
I recently preached a sermon on Philippians 4 and focused on what it means to rejoice in the Lord. I shared that through grateful prayer we might be able to let go of worry and find joy and peace in Christ. I started that sermon highlighting how we find a number of songs about finding happiness and seeking joy: “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”, “Three Little Birds”, “Put on a Happy Face”, “Joy to the World”, and so many others. In thinking more about it, one of the best songs to capture being happy in Christ or rejoicing in the Lord, would be My Favorite Things from The Sound of Music.
Raindrops on roses and Whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens,
Brown paper packages tied up with string,
These are a few of my favorite things.
When the dog bites, when the bee stings, when I’m feeling sad,
I simply remember my favorite things and then I don’t feel so bad.
Sister Maria goes on to list things like “crisp apple strudel” and “silver white winters that melt into springs” as things that bring her joy. It’s important to recognize that this list of favorite things don’t keep her from experiencing the dog bites, bee stings, and sadness. Instead, they help her cope when she is afraid, when she is hurting, and when she is feeling sad. Everyone should have such a list. As Christians, that list of favorite things that can bring us joy starts with God’s presence, God’s love, and the gifts we have been given. What do you have in your list of favorite things?
Source of Joy, thank you for showering us with blessings. Help us to be mindful of your gifts and how we might use them in your service. Thank you for being present with us no matter what is going on in our lives. May we find happiness knowing that you are our source of joy. In Jesus’ name, Amen.