Tag Archives: getting joy

God’s Joy–Your Safe Place Against Catastrophie

I’ve played a lot of baseball in my life and probably watched as much as I played. One of the funniest things I ever saw was a game between Paraloma, the village where I grew up, and Graves Chapel. Graves Chapel wasn’t even a village, just an area where enough people lived to have a baseball team.

Not a very good baseball team, mind you, but a team nonetheless.

This particular day Paraloma was putting a whipping on them that even Mr. Clean couldn’t wash off (excuse me for getting a bit over the top). Late in the game Graves Chapel substituted a young guy for their third baseman. The replacement evidently hadn’t played much.

Not long afterwards a Paraloma player on second base took off trying to steal third. The catcher whipped it down to the third baseman who planted himself on the bag and waited for the runner to come so he could tag him out.

The baserunner saw that he was going to be out by a mile so he slowed and walked submissively towards where the green third baseman waited. The defender stretched out his glove to make the tag when suddenly the docile baserunner came alive and slid under his tag.

Safe!

The crowd exploded in laughter. I think even the sheepish young man’s own team was laughing. His coach took him out after that.

Safe! If you’re on the base, you’re safe. They can’t get you out.

Are You Safe?

Listen to this:

“Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. For me to write the same things to you is not tedious, but for you it is safe.” (Philippians 3:1, NKJV) The NIV and several other versions say it’s a “safeguard.”

It’s amazing, isn’t it? Rejoicing in the Lord makes us “safe!” It’s a safeguard. Continue reading

How To Go From Sourpuss To Joy

 

sun-151763_640Once my friend Scott and I were standing in a long line in a brand-new building supply store in Luxembourg. A grand-opening sale and great publicity worked to perfection and people scurried everywhere like ants on an anthill that someone had just kicked.

We watched the young lady at the front of our interminable line robotically checking everyone out. I’m sure she was a bit overwhelmed with the crowd, but a machine would have displayed more personality.

So I said to my friend Scott, “Do you think we can make her laugh?”

He was pretty sure we could and when we got our turn we teased and laughed with her. Before we left she was a jolly old soul.

Cheerfullness Isn’t Far Away

Which makes me think that joy isn’t far away for most of us. All we have to do is dig away a little sand and cheerfullness bubbles up like a hudden stream in the desert.

Christians have a reputation of being a sour lot and let’s admit it—often it’s true. But why? If anyone has a reason to be glad it’s those who have an inheritance like ours.

We’re even commanded by our joyful God to be joyful. Now I know that when we say that joy is a commandment, that’s often just something else to feel guilty about.

“I’m supposed to be joyful but here I am sad. I’m just not what I ought to be.” Continue reading