Thank-Filled Life = Joy-filled Life

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Oh, how I love a party. My family loves to mark birthdays, holidays, and other special occasions with big celebrations. The honoree selects the menu, and we always have a theme and color scheme. We take plenty of pictures, laugh, and tell tall tales on each other. I recently married and was blessed with a bridal shower given by the Women of Worth Bible study that I lead. What a celebration! About 75 women gathered to show their love through gifts, food, and even a good humored “roasting.” The day overflowed with love and laughter. At each of these occasions my family and friends honored God and thanked him for his abundant blessings. These celebrations are joy-filled occasions. It seems easy to be joyful in celebrations, but how do we maintain joy and consistently live a joy-filled life. Paul tells us in I Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” How can we be “joyful always?”

Psalm 100 in the psalm of thanksgiving and tells us how to live a joy-filled life.

Shout with joy to the Lord, all the earth!
    Worship the Lord with gladness.
    Come before him, singing with joy.
Acknowledge that the Lord is God!
    He made us, and we are his.
    We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving;
    go into his courts with praise.
    Give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good.
    His unfailing love continues forever,
and his faithfulness continues to each generation. Psalm 100

Take note of the actions the psalmist tells us to take in order to have a thank-filled, joy-filled life.

1.   Shout with joy to the Lord.
2.    Worship the Lord with gladness
3.    Come before him, singing with joy.
4.    Acknowledge that the Lord is God.
5.    Enter his gates with thanksgiving.
6.    Go to his courts with praise.
7.    Give thanks to him.
8.    Praise his name.

 All 8 actions pertain to honoring, thanking, and praising God. When we celebrate God with praise and thanksgiving, we experience the joy of the Lord.  Joy and thankfulness go together. The Psalmist tells us the reason to worship and praise God is because he is good. God is only good; he cannot be anything but good. That is reason to celebrate. Knowing that his love and faithfulness will always be with us is cause for celebration. This psalm tells us a joy-filled life is overflowing with thankfulness. In order to be filled with joy, we need to continually be thankful to God for his goodness and blessings. If you are missing out on the joy-filled life, check your gratitude meter and make sure you're living a life focused on praise and thanksgiving.

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