Today’s message summary from Pastor Gus Brown:
In ministry, it is important to remain focused on Jesus Christ. We should be cautious when we lean on our own wisdom instead of continuing to seek God’s wisdom. We should avoid leaning on our own strength, which can also lead to failure. It is best to depend on the wisdom of God. Another hindrance in ministry is failure to lean on the Holy Spirit.
Then the Lord spoke to you from the fire. You kept hearing the sound of the words, but didn’t see a form; there was only a voice.
Are you able to listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit?
True joy can’t be artificially induced. Joy comes from being in the presence of God. While there may be a fair amount of pain experienced in ministry, the real joy is in seeing God at work in the ministry.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, 23 gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.
It’s the presence of God that brings joy.
23 Moses and Aaron then entered the tent of meeting. When they came out, they blessed the people, and the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people. 24 Fire came from the Lord and consumed the burnt offering and the fat portions on the altar. And when all the people saw it, they shouted and fell facedown on the ground.
1 Chronicles 29:20-22
20 Then David said to the whole assembly, “Praise the Lord your God.” So the whole assembly praised the Lord God of their ancestors. They bowed down and paid homage to the Lord and the king.
21 The following day they offered sacrifices to the Lord and burnt offerings to the Lord: 1,000 bulls, 1,000 rams, and 1,000 lambs, along with their drink offerings, and sacrifices in abundance for all Israel. 22 They ate and drank with great joy in the Lord’s presence that day.
Then, for a second time, they made David’s son Solomon king; they anointed him as the Lord’s ruler, and Zadok as the priest.
For you see, when the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby leaped for joy inside me!
You have revealed the paths of life to me;
You will fill me with gladness
in Your presence.
You reveal the path of life to me;
in Your presence is abundant joy;
in Your right hand are eternal pleasures.
Joy is not in the ministry itself, but in the discovery of the work of God in the midst of the ministry.
Our joy is in the work of The Lord through us by the Holy Spirit.
4 For You have made me rejoice, Lord,
by what You have done;
I will shout for joy
because of the works of Your hands.
5 How magnificent are Your works, Lord,
how profound Your thoughts!
6 A stupid person does not know,
a fool does not understand this.
It is what The Lord does that makes one glad.
samach (saw-makh) – to brighten up, cheer up
make glad, joyful, to rejoice
God wants us to know His presence. Even with the problems of life, you will experience joy in His presence!
13 You pushed me hard to make me fall,
but the Lord helped me.
14 The Lord is my strength and my song;
He has become my salvation.
15 There are shouts of joy and victory
in the tents of the righteous:
“The Lord’s right hand performs valiantly!
16 The Lord’s right hand is raised.
The Lord’s right hand performs valiantly!”
17 I will not die, but I will live
and proclaim what the Lord has done.
Then he said to them, “Go and eat what is rich, drink what is sweet, and send portions to those who have nothing prepared, since today is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, because the joy of the Lord is your stronghold.”
The joy of The Lord is your strength.
The Seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in Your name.”
9 “As the Father has loved Me, I have also loved you. Remain in My love. 10 If you keep My commands you will remain in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commands and remain in His love.
11 “I have spoken these things to you so that My joy may be in you and your joy may be complete.
Obedience in God’s Word brings joy.
Jesus wants us to have His joy.
11 I am no longer in the world,
but they are in the world,
and I am coming to You.
protect them by Your name
that You have given Me,
so that they may be one as We are one.
12 While I was with them,
I was protecting them by Your name
that You have given Me.
I guarded them and not one of them is lost,
except the son of destruction,
so that the Scripture may be fulfilled.
13 Now I am coming to You,
and I speak these things in the world
so that they may have My joy completed in them.
14 I have given them Your word.
The world hated them
because they are not of the world,
as I am not of the world.
15 I am not praying
that You take them out of the world
but that You protect them from the evil one.
16 They are not of the world,
as I am not of the world.
17 Sanctify them by the truth;
Your word is truth.
18 As You sent Me into the world,
I also have sent them into the world.
19 I sanctify Myself for them,
so they also may be sanctified by the truth.
48 When the Gentiles heard this, they rejoiced and glorified the message of the Lord, and all who had been appointed to eternal life believed. 49 So the message of the Lord spread through the whole region. 50 But the Jews incited the prominent women, who worshiped God, and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas and expelled them from their district. 51 But they shook the dust off their feet against them and went to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.
13 and if the household is worthy, let your peace be on it. But if it is unworthy, let your peace return to you. 14 If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, shake the dust off your feet when you leave that house or town.
…for the kingdom of God is not eating and drinking, but righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.
1 Thessalonians 1:6
…and you became imitators of us and of the Lord when, in spite of severe persecution, you welcomed the message with joy from the Holy Spirit.
This joy is in spite of severe suffering.
…keeping our eyes on Jesus,the source and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that lay before Himendured a cross and despised the shame and has sat down at the right hand of God’s throne.
God indeed focuses on our real need and allows us to look past our problems in order to experience His joy within His presence.
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!