I am eager to get to my James study for today before my local world finds that I am awake. 🙂 So I am borrowing this morning to wish you a quick good morning. This comes from my YouVersion devotion for today.
Richard Wurmbrand tells of the joy believers knew while confined in Nazi prison camps. Although many were cursing their lot, hating their captors, and plotting revenge, believers were serving their Christ faithfully, sincerely, and with great joy. Both the believer and unbeliever were subjected to the same conditions. However, one reacted as a saint while the other reacted as a sinner.
Viktor Frankl reminds us that true happiness in life depends not on conditions but on decisions. If our hearts are firmly turned toward Christ then we can and will joyfully worship Him–in good times and bad. This seems to be the essence of Psalm 148. Wherever we are, with whatever we have, we should still praise the Lord.
When our praise is based on God’s goodness, rather than the conditions of our lives, then we have reached the state of true faith. No matter what the conditions, we will remain true. Like Paul, we learn both to be abased and to abound. Circumstances do not dictate our happiness–that is a result of a living relationship with Christ. And when He is in our hearts, we cannot help but sing–whether it be from the mountaintop or from the cellar.
11 Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. 12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. 13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.
We (HE and I) are still working on this and no doubt we (HE and I) shall be till I see HIS face.
Psalm 146 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
1 Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord, O my soul!
2 I will praise the Lord while I live;
I will sing praises to my God while I have my being.
(emphasis mine – I will)
May the emphasis be my experience and yours too.