October 5 – When Rejoicing Seems Impossible

“Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. To write the same things again is no trouble to me, and it is a safeguard for you.” – Philippians 3:1 (NASB)

Sometimes, although we know we are to live with a spirit of joy and rejoice in that, we find it difficult. Circumstances hit us like a blind-side sacking of a quarterback. We feel crushed and our energy is sapped to nearly negative numbers. Paul’s familiar theme throughout the epistle has already been heard. But this time he adds “in the Lord.” This is the sphere in which a believer’s joy exists—a sphere which is unrelated to the circumstances of life, but related to an unassailable, unchanging relationship to the sovereign Lord. Some will title this letter by Paul to the Philippians as the ‘Joy Letter’ and it is not far off. The word “rejoice” is used eight times and “rejoiced” once by Paul. It seems from this repeated emphasis that the Christians in Philippi  needed this word of encouragement. We too often need this as well. Most of God’s people need this challenge frequently. It’s so easy and natural for us to let circumstances discourage us. The cure for discouragement is to rivet one’s attention on the Lord and rejoice in Him. We can rejoice in the Lord even when situations make rejoicing seem impossible. It is not.

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