Today's lesson is straight from my favorite lady - Beth Moore herself! She is an incredible writer and I love the insight that she gives in the lesson that I am about to post. I want to encourage you girls to be happy, excited, refreshed, and ecstatic in your faith! Our God is so amazing and he wants us to boast in Him ~ how sweet is that?! Well... I won't hold you any longer, here is our daily devotion for today:
Be Happy in Your Faith
Scripture Reading: 1 Thessalonians 5:16-25
Today's Treasure: "Be happy [in your faith] and rejoice and be glad-hearted continually - always" (1 Thessalonians 5:16, Amplified Bible).
I want to shout hallelujah with you before I even have a chance to explain what we have to shout about! Dear one, when was the last time someone fairly balanced in Scripture told you that this faith thing isn't only about sacrifices and continually delayed gratification? The apostle Paul seemed to be saying in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-17, "For heaven's sake, be happy in your faith! That's one reason you have it!" Too many of us have somehow come to believe that we lack maturity if we wish that the Christian life wasn't just good for us like a bowl of bran but that it could also occasionally make us happy like chocolate malt!
That voice in your ear has been lying all the time. Guess what? You have complete biblical permission to be happy in your faith and also do the unthinkable - be bold enough to ask why if you're not!
Some of our dear brothers and sisters around the world are so terribly persecuted for their Christian beliefs that they may have a greater challenge being happy in their faith. Many of them live and die as martyrs and then enter their "master's happiness." If you live in a country with religious freedom, however, then being happy in your faith can be a reality more often than not. In fact, a primary reason we are vulnerable to the enemy's seduction after we have received the Spirit of Christ is that we misunderstand what we've been given. We continue to look for happiness outside of Christ.
You see, the greatest source of God-given power you and I have to abstain from evil is to be happy in our faith. Certainly many other things can add happiness to our lives, but they are detoxified and made safe to the believer when her primary source of happiness is faith in Jesus. Without happiness in Christ, any other source of joy can become a tool for seduction away from a sincere devotion to the Lord.
(Amanda writes) Furthermore, when the lost see Believers unhappy in their faith it does little to win souls to Christ. Recently I sat with three very godly women who were sharing reasons why they spent so much of their young lives resisting Christ. Each one said she did not want to be like the dull, boring Christians she saw around her. Yes, it is possible that the lost could see a fulfilling Christian walk in us and still consider by worldly standards that our lives are dull and boring. It is also very possible that hordes of Christians are really living quiet lives that scream out, "I'm unhappy in my faith!"
Beloved, Christ said, "I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full" (John 10:10). Let Him fulfill your life make you happy in your faith. Any other source of joy is unsafe when our main happiness is not in our faith.
Sweet Father, I praise you for who you are. I rejoice in the freedom to find happiness in my faith. I pray that you will be my first love and my most fulfilling joy. Thank you for your unfailing love. Amen.