Friday, June 13, 2003

Weekly Word for July 13-19, 2003

Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth. (Psalm 100:1)

I have known this Psalm since I was about 9 years old. In Sunday school we had to learn bible verses - and this was one of the verses I learned. I learned it this way: “make a “joyful noise” to the Lord”! It made it so much easier when, years later, I would sit in church with a very close friend who could not sing a note - they were tone-deaf! With their whole heart they would be singing - and everyone around us would turn to look! At first I was a little embarrassed - and then I remembered the passage.

A joyful noise! - the other day I was coming out of the shower and realized I was singing. I have an OK voice - but it is just that - just OK. I love music and have it on in the house all day long. But my singing? Well . . . it isn’t exactly one of my better gifts! When I came out of the shower, I was singing an old Christian song that I hadn’t remembered in many years. The song is called: “Just a closer walk with thee”. When I realized I was singing - I said to Ted: “I wonder why I was singing that song?” He looked at me and said: “Maybe the Lord wanted to hear you sing it”. I laughed - the Lord wanted to hear me????

The Lord wants to hear us - hear our hearts. He already knows what is in them - but sometimes we need to hear it ourselves. Sometimes we don’t even know what is there.

I love the Lord, because he hears My voice and my supplications, Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live. (Psalm 116:1)

He hears our voice. He hears all that we ask Him - everything that is within us - He knows it. The Psalms are full of praising the Lord! They were written by King David. David wasn’t a perfect man, he wasn’t without sin! He coveted another’s wife, he murdered her husband, he was full of faults! The Lord knew David’s heart - and He loved him anyways! And David loved God! I find it amazing - that even though we are full of sin - the Lord loves us! He does - He loves us and can fix those things that we cannot.

Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth.

Serve the Lord with gladness;

Come before Him with joyful singing.

Know that the Lord Himself is God;

It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;

We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.

(Psalm 100: 1-3)

Shout joyfully! - Sometimes it is not so easy to be joyful! The Lord knows that. He knows our sorrows as well as our joys. He knows those things that even we don’t - those things that still hurt. The other day I got a phone call from a very old friend of mine. I hadn’t talked to her in quite a while. She had been a very large part of my life for many years, we had worked in ministry together, and then somehow we had drifted apart. A lot of changes had taken place since I had last talked with her - including my moving and getting married. When she called, she wondered if I had mistakenly taken some books that we had used years ago. I told her I would look, and hung up. After I got off the phone, many emotions welled up inside of me that I didn’t even know were there! I felt angry, and sad, and all sorts of emotions that I had locked away. When Ted came home we talked about all of this. He let me yell and cry and just “be mad”! The Word tells us to: be angry and sin not! (Ephesians 4:26) - Well . . . I was angry! And I can’t say I wanted to be nice at that time.

Whenever we have change, whenever we leave others, there is hurt. I had not dealt with the hurt of leaving my friend. I know that I still haven’t fully done so - but I have begun to. Because I also know that I can see the good that we shared - the ministry that was good and helped others. I also know that because of that period of time - I am who I am today! And that makes me full of joy!

Enter His gates with thanksgiving,

And His courts with praise.

Give thanks to Him; bless his name.

For the Lord is good;

His loving kindness is everlasting,

And His faithfulness to all generations.

(Psalm 100: 4-5)

Make a joyful noise to the Lord! - We don’t do this because we have no sin, no anger, no pain - we do it because the Lord knows we have it - and loves us anyways! He knows how to heal our hearts, to set us free, and fill us with more joy than we can possibly imagine!

Will you give your anger, your hurts, all that is within your heart to Him? Will you allow Him to come closer and heal you? When you do - then, you will know how to make a joyful noise to the Lord!

God bless you in the coming week ahead.

In His Love,

Debbie and Ted Ayers


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