Romans 8:31-34 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else?
33 Who dares accuse us whom God has chosen for his own? No one, for God himself has given us right standing with himself.
34 Who then will condemn us? No one, for Christ Jesus died for us and was raised to life for us, and he is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.
I'm the comeback kid, but it isn't because of anything good that I did, I have God on my side! I can never be good enough but I don't have to be! Think about it, God has the right to judge me and if He does then he will certainly find me guilty but instead He fixed our relationship so that I can call Him my Father.
Too many people don't have this joyful outlook, even followers of Jesus don't always remember how awesome their condition is with God's love and favor upon their life. I learned from Pastor Tim Keller that the opposite of joy is hopelessness and if you have hope in God then you should always have joy.
Before I became God's child I had one enemy and that was God. My enemy was good and wanted to help me even though I was at war with Him. Now that I have peace with God and he is no longer my enemy I have even more enemies than I had before and they are all evil.
My new enemies as a child of God are the world, the flesh and the devil. The world has a mindset that tries to sell you on the idea that you can find peace and joy somewhere else, your flesh is your old sin nature that wars against your good intentions and the devil is your accuser that judges without mercy.
All three of these enemies are very powerful and they are pretty good at stealing our peace and joy if we allow them to take our eyes off of the source of our hope. The fact that he is coming for me should dominate my thoughts and give me plenty of reason to be full of joy when my circumstances don't look good.
Philippians 4:4-7 Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again--rejoice! 5 Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon. 6 Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. 7 Then you will experience God's peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Instead of losing our joy we need to remember to pray about everything. Paul told the Philippian church that their prayers should be followed up immediately with thanksgiving. We usually like to wait and see the results of our prayers before we decide to say thanks, that's just how we are, we need to realize that what ever answer we get is ultimately for our good so we should thank him up front before we see the answer.
John 16:22 So you have sorrow now, but I will see you again; then you will rejoice, and no one can rob you of that joy
I have hope that the rest of the world is so desperately pursuing in all the wrong places. I need to share the hope that comes from the only Son of God, the only one that could take the punishment that I deserved, the only one that could secure me a home in heaven for eternity.