Ruth 3 (August 23)

Real Joy                                                                                

            …and he was in a contented mood…”

            A Christian man was having a hard time at work. His problem was not with the boss or with his overall working conditions—it was with his coworkers. Every Monday through Thursday, these unbelieving co-laborers talked openly (and loudly) about their sexual encounters and drinking binges during the previous weekend. On Fridays, their conversations revolved around plans for the upcoming weekend.

            Their idea of “fun” included sexual promiscuity and experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Some of these men were also addicted to gambling and other immoral and illegal activities.

            This world is full of fun-seeking individuals who, by the way, are never happy or satisfied. A human heart can only find joy and unadulterated gladness in Christ. Jesus is our joy in this life and will be our glory for all eternity. Pagans cannot find true happiness in their evil (and costly) vices, and Christians cannot find true joy in their multiple church activities. The problem with both approaches is that there is no substitute for Christ, not even church functions or God’s blessings.

            Joy if found only in loving and following Jesus. Pure joy comes as a result of our intimate communion with Christ and it is a fruit of being full of the Holy Spirit. The joyous believer does not need external pleasures or peaceful times to express this internal and eternal Joy.

            I pray that you can experience this joy again today. God has given this everlasting joy to us as a gift of his grace, to be enjoyed every day and in any situation.

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