Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Is Not Rejoice a Sin?

A man stands alone, pouring his heart out to God.
Looking to God for relief.
In the midst of his prayer, he hears a still small voice of comfort.

"Cheer Up!
Things could be worse".

So the man lifted his head and and his heart was lifted. He cheered up and he thanked God.

And Just as God has said

"things did, get worse"

I've never been one to be able to get into rejoicing in the Lord. That's not to say that I don't, I'm just not a get excited about it type of guy.

I got into trouble once when I said I'm not a very rejoicing person. I had a young couple come up to me after the service wanting me to be baptized in the Holy Spirt. It was just beyond them, that someone could claim to be baptized in the Holy Spirt and not be jumping about for Joy all over the place. I sometimes wish I could do that, but in the end it's just not me.

I tried once, for quite a long time. I think it may have been after reading the book Prison to Praise by Merlin Carothers a long time ago.

This was an amazing book and it became the in thing to praise the Lord about everything.

Hit your finger with a hammer.

Praise the Lord!

Stubbed your Toe,

Praise the Lord!

My best friend's Cat just died.

Praise the Lord!

A friend of mine just died...

Well that was much harder but still that is what we were told to do so we did.

Praise the Lord!

I don't think that was ever the intention by the author of  Prison to Praise, but over time that was the result.

Praising the Lord becomes the answer to all life's problems. It was the magic formula to get that desired action from God.

I remember reading another book that a friend Harry Roberts put me onto.

It was called "Hey God".

It's a long time ago now and I don't have a copy but as I recall the book was written by the son of an Italian Mother that had recently come to a true understanding of faith and her method of exercising that faith.

Basically every time she was confronted by a problem she would call out to God,

Starting her prayer with "Hey God !"

It was not so much about rejoicing as about one woman's unwavering faith that God will fix everything.
I found that truly inspiring. In the end however, even though rejoicing gave me a tremendous high, it also had its Dark Side in that after the high, I went on an almighty downer and often had to fight off bouts of depression, sometimes severe bouts.

It was just better to try and stay on a level keel emotionally, that way I could appreciate the Joy but not have to suffer the dark side.

Read the rest of  Is Not Rejoicing In Fact a Sin

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