Let the faithful exult in glory; let them sing for joy on their couches. (Psalms 149:5 NRSV)

Now you and I have met people who claim to have been born again--who claim to have experienced God's grace in their lives--who will tell you they have been washed in the blood of the Lamb--but they are angry and bitter and lacking in both compassion and love. It is not ours to judge, but one has to wonder if they have confused a particular kind of emotional experience with the surrender of one's life to God. Where God is, there is light. Where God is, there is love. Where God is, there is joy.

In one PEANUTS comic strip, Lucy is berating Charlie Brown for losing the baseball game for their team. She says, "You blockhead! You struck out, and we lost the last game of the season!" Then she adds accusingly, "You were standing there thinking about your new girlfriend, weren't you?"

As Charlie Brown walks away, he mumbles, "I thought being in love was supposed to make you happy." To which Lucy replies, "Where'd you get that idea?"

Love and happiness do go together, and so does being a Christian filled with joy.


God of all emotions, fill me with the joy of being a close follower of Jesus Christ. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Ron Newhouse

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