Sunday, December 30, 2007

Joy

I've been thinking more about that "my" vs "Thy" salvation devotional.

When it was "my" salvation, my joy wasn't really in salvation at all -- it was in human accomplishments. I was happy because I believed that, at least for the moment, the scales were tipped in my favor. My joy came from a temporary assurance.

I certainly have a lot more joy in my life now that I'm secure in my salvation--not the ecstatic laughter stuff that I used to call "the joy of the Lord," but a deep (and still deepening) sense of gratitude and awe that still makes me smile every time I think about it. This joy isn't a passing emotion that I need to "work up" and attempt to maintain on my own strength; instead, it is more of a silent, steady undercurrent that is always there. I can draw from it at church, at work, in the car, anywhere...

Before, "joy" was a stream that I had to feed. Now, it's a stream that feeds me.

That's a huge contrast...

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

It sems God has blessed you. All of us have to rake that everyday journey or walk on this world. Having that joy or peace that I believe comes from God, makes every step easier. I know there will still be problems, but I also know that God will not deseart me. I believe He is always there, it is up to us to seek HiM. I attend a very loving, accepting Pentecostal church. Some of the things you said about your former church were disturbing because they did not seem in line with God's teachings. But I try not to judge because that is not my place. So continue to be blessed. If you have found a church home that nurtures your spiritual and human sides, and uses the bible as its base, that seems to be the important thing. We each have to be where we can find God, and grow in our relationship with Him. You are loved by Him and He does provide grace freely to us all. I try to live righteously and to God's word not because of what my pastor says, but because I want to please God and do what He has asked of me.
It is hard to write. I probably screwed some of this up, so forgive me. I really wanted to sy I am happy you have found a spiritual home, and God. Please be mindful of any damage you may inflict on the Pentecostal church with your ccomments. There are good churches and pastors in the UPCI. It may be the place where some people can find God. I wouldn't want any one to be lost. I found God There, others may too. I'm just thinkiing out loud.
God's grace, Love and Joy continue in you, be blessed.
SC

RP said...

Thanks for your comments.

I'm glad that you're in a place where you can grow in your relationship with God... that's what matters at the end of the day. (And at the end of a life, for that matter!)

Some of the churches that I attended in the past weren't like that. It wasn't OK to ask about things that didn't seem to line up with what was in the Bible. The Bible wasn't even the final authority, since the Pastor could give specific directive "Words" from God... which couldn't be questioned.

That sort of thing should be disturbing no matter where it happens...

thanksbeuntogod said...

So I was not raised in Pentecost, I was introduced to Pentecost in 1995. I thought it was the best thing since sliced bread. However, the Joy piece I just could not obtain. I felt I had to do so many things to obtain Joy. Matter of fact, I remember saying, "Happiness is due to happenings....I have Joy that comes from God." Did I really have that Joy...NO!! September of 2008, I felt a shaking, it's been hard but GREAT!! I use to have the Shante initiated Joy. Now I am associated with the, "stream that feeds me".