A character in the Li’l Abner comic strip several years ago named Joe Btfsplk always had a dark cloud hanging perpetually over his head. Doom and gloom. Yet in Psalm 87:7 the Bible says, “All my springs and resources of joy are in You, city of God.” Meaning God’s Spirit dwells in us if we are born again Christ followers, in other words, joy comes from the Lord, while doom and gloom come from people, circumstances, things, etc. I think Paul was a great example of how we can live in joy and victory as we read the book of Philippians. He experienced beatings, flogging, and imprisoned on several occasions. In fact, he was in a Roman prison when he wrote the book called the joy book! Some 16 times he uses the words rejoice, or joy. Philippians 4:11 Paul states, “In all things I have learned to be content.” Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ, Who strengthens me.”
How can someone experience and even encourage us to have joy or rejoice when things all around us are upside down and painful?
Paul challenges us to remember and rehearse the enormous privilege and surpassing value in knowing Christ personally. He reminds us of being heaven bound. We are so blessed with the power of Christ living in us and through us to do the Father’s will and good pleasure. He says because we have the power of Christ living in us that we don’t have to grumble, complain, and be filled with anxiety. Our Father in heaven says, “I’ve got this.”
What is the Bible’s answer to the challenges of today in this century in which we live.
1. BELIEVE…Philippians 1:6, “He Who began a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ developing, perfecting and bringing to full completion in you.”
2. Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you that My joy might remain in you and that your joy might be full.” John 15:11
3. Jesus said, “The enemy comes to steal, kill and destroy, but I have come that you might have Life (God’s Life) and have it more abundantly.” John 10:10
4. “All things work together for good to those that have been called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28
A man tells a story that in a town that he visited, there is a well located in the middle of the town. People would flock to that well and drink fresh water. While visiting one day he noticed an older man drinking from the well. He asked him, “has the well ever run dry?” No, the older man said that they had tried to pump it dry. They even got the fire engines to try to pump it dry. Then, to their amazement they found there was an underground river flowing right through the town. God says, that His well of salvation and grace will NEVER run dry. It flows from the “river of God.” WOW what a Savior!