Our church small group met last night. The book we are reading was talking about joy.
"Joy is at the heart of God's plan for human beings. Joy is at the heart of God himself.... Jesus came as the Joy-bringer. The joy we see in the happiest child is but a fraction of the joy that resides in the heart of God."
"Imagine Genesis if God approached his work as we so often do:
In the beginning, it was nine o'clock, so God had to go to work. He filled out a requisition to separate light from darkness. He considered making stars to beautify the night, and planets to fill the skies, but thought it sounded like too much work; and besides, thought God, "That's not my job." So he decided to knock off early and call it a day. And he look at what he had done and he said, "It'll have to do."
On the second day God separated the waters from the dry land. And he made all the dry land flat, plain, and functional, so that - behold - the whole earth looked like Idaho. He thought about making mountains and valleys and glaciers and jungles and forests, but he decided it wouldn't be worth the effort. And God looked at what he had done that day and said, "It'll have to do."
And God made a pigeon to fly in the air, and a carp to swim in the waters, and a cat to creep upon dry ground. And God thought about making millions of other species of all sizes and shapes and colors, but he couldn't drum up any enthusiasm for any other animals - in fact, he wasn't too crazy about the cat. Besides, it was almost time for the Late Show. So God looked at all he had done and God said, "It'll have to do."
And at the end of the week, God was seriously burned out. So he breathed a big sigh of relief and said, "Thank Me, it's Friday."
"We will not understand God until we undestand this about him: "God is the happiest being in the universe." The problem with people, according to Jesus, is not that we are too happy for God's taste, but that we are not happy enough.
Lewis Smedes put it this way: "To miss out on joy is to miss out on the reason for your existence."
I loved this chapter! I learned so much. Things that make perfect sense, I've just never thought about them that way before. For years I've known the song, "The joy of the Lord is my strength."
I get it now.
I understand it.