How To Build A Better Marriage
Beginning next week, Penny and I will be sharing biblical thoughts and perspectives on “How to Build A Better Marriage.” We pray and believe that the information you receive over the next couple of months will be a vehicle for doing exactly that. You may already have a great marriage, but we all need fresh manna that will keep our marriage healthy, fun, and exciting. This week we would like to share a few thoughts that will prepare your heart for the coming series. It is actually a gift that all believers have, but not one that daily operates in the lives of most believers. It is a fruit of the Spirit called “JOY!”
“You show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (Ps. 16:11)
Joy is God’s gift to those who have chosen to make His Son Jesus the savior of their souls. The world knows nothing about joy and it never will. Why? Because joy has nothing to do with our five physical senses, it is born of the Spirit. The world is familiar with happiness, but not joy. Happiness is based on circumstances and feelings. When circumstances are good and everything is agreeable, the world is able to bask for the moment in happiness. The challenge is that circumstances are not always good and things aren’t always wonderful and feely. That is why the world, as well as carnal minded Christians, are happy one day and sad the next, gleeful and then glum, excited and suddenly exasperated. That is not the life that Jesus has bequeathed to His children. Christians who stay on the mountain top do so because they don’t allow their physical senses to have rule and dominion over the promises of God. Mature Christians are those who refuse to be conformed to this world, but are continuously being transformed by the renewing of their minds.
Dear brothers and sisters, you cannot discipline yourself to be joyful. In fact, the more you try, the more frustrated you will become. “Not by might, not by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord” (Zek. 4:6). A woman by the name of Martha understood that the more she rested at the feet of Jesus and listened to His words, the more she was changed. Her sister, on the other hand, was frustrated and upset because she thought she could please Jesus with her works, but Jesus gently reminded her that her own self effort was not the key that would unlock the door to a joyful heart. No, our spirit person is now born again and as complete as it will ever be, but our minds are always a work in progress. Joy – unspeakable Joy, belongs to you! You don’t have to earn it. Jesus has already paid for it. So take hold of it, bask in it and refuse to live as the world lives.
Until next Friday, keep the faith, speak words of faith and watch as your circumstances line up with God’s promises for your life. “I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jer. 29:11). In Him is fullness of Joy!