“Because you didn’t serve the LORD your God with joy and a cheerful heart, even though you had an abundance of everything, you will serve your enemies the LORD will send against you, in famine, thirst, nakedness, and a lack of everything.” – Deuteronomy 28:47-48
Joy! What a word – small, just three letters, yet contagious enough to change the world. As I read this I had to repent (again!) over my sinful attitudes. Though this was written to a specific people (Israel) in a specific time (OT) related to their particular covenant with God – does He really expect anything different from us today? Especially those of us living in the West, enjoying the riches and freedom that the majority of the rest of the world knows nothing about.
Oh, how easy it is to get bogged down with other things and yet we are told to “Rejoice always!” in 1 Thessalonians 5:16! Always! This is surely another one of those one liners that for many of us takes a lifetime to implement. If I could with all honesty get this one down, what a difference it would make!
God told His people in the OT that because they didn’t want to joyfully SERVE Him with all the blessings He’d poured out on them – then they could SERVE someone else with nothing!
Dear God, Let us worship and serve you in spirit and truth and joy today – that you might be glorified!
Addendum: My reading was paired with Ps, Pr and NT readings and I am always amazed at the overlap and connections that appear. Ps 45:13-17 depicts rejoicing at a wedding, Prov. 11:9-11 rejoicing when the righteous thrive and the wicked die, and in Luke while I didn’t notice the use of joy or rejoicing it did end on a note of blessing (Lk 11:28) connected to living out God’s Word – which was a complete circle back to where my reading started with Deuteronomy 28:15 about being following all God’s commands “carefully” (repeated in Dt 28:30).