Has Christianity become a chore?
When I see my son, I smile. Even when I'm exhausted and in need of sleep, I can and do still get up to serve His needs and desires. I nourish our relationship with things as small as eye contact while he is nursing, telling him who he is and who I am, and holding his hand. All of this brings me so much joy, just being around him brings me joy. This doesn't mean that I am not tired, and looking at my to-do list with a puzzled face as if to question, "how in the world are you going to get done?"
Does being around God make you happy? Even when obedience hurts, does it still bring you joy that you honored Him? Or are you so caught up watching and pretending at church that you don't even attempt to enjoy God's presence? Are you so focused on keeping the commandments that you've forgotten that God wants your obedience to come from the heart? Maybe you're too obsessed with your own faults to even surrender to the joy that surrendering to Christ brings.
I pray God will restore to you the joy of His salvation, like David prayed. As a Christian, the call is to sacrifice, serve and be persecuted for Jesus. BUT regardless of what is happening in the world a Christian knows there is rest, refuge, and rejoicing in God's presence. There is empowerment and joy in trusting His Holy Spirit and leaning on Him. we should feel joy when we please God even if what pleases Him wasn't our first choice.
God rejoices to see us do well, and He delights in His children. In the Bible we are constantly admonished to delight ourselves in The Lord.
When we pray do we just automatically feel all tingly and good inside? When we go to church and worship with other believers, do we feel happy or fulfilled? My answer is... YES! When I pray and read God's Word, I feel so much peace about doing His will. When I go to church and engage myself, I come away feeling unburdened and full, empowered to take on the week. That doesn't mean I don't have other feelings, it just means that I take my fleeting feelings and surrender them to God so that I can maneuver them to never lose sight of Him or the joy that I have access to and get to spread because I am a Christian.
So practical tips for How to delight yourself in God?
1. Remember Christianity is NOT your religion, it is your ID. You are a Christian, and you are identified as such because THE GOD of the universe sent His beloved only Begotten Son Jesus Christ to die for your sins; to propose marriage to you and you said yes.
2. Be honest with God in your prayers. Stop faking, stop putting on airs, and looking for the perfect design of words. Psalm 51:6 "Behold, You desire truth in the innermost being, And in the hidden part [of my heart] You will make me know wisdom.” Let your moments before God be a time of truth and vulnerability with your Creator and Father. You always feel closest to the person that you tell everything to. On top of that, the more time you spend in His presence, the more you hear His voice.
3. Get around a godly crowd/person. Church plays an essential role in keeping Christians motivated toward Christ. You don’t know everything and neither do I, increasing the importance of coming together to hear God’s Word rightly divided. Romans 10:17 AMP “So faith comes from hearing [what is told], and what is heard comes by the [preaching of the] message concerning Christ."
4. Serve! Work the works of Him that sent us while we are able. Jesus came to SEEK and save! But first He sought, and He commands us to do the same seeking, "go ye into all the world and make disciples of all men...” Mark 16:15-18. Further, Jesus’ last command is for us to love one another as He has loved us, John 13:34. We have an opportunity to partake in the service of Christ when we intentionally seek out opportunities to serve with integrity and humility.
5.Worship. Always remember who God is, and that He alone is worthy of all that you have to give. Only God’s love is unfailing, only He is faithful to us despite or unfaithfulness to Him.
6.PRAY! You truly cannot delight in someone you don’t talk to. So talk, and listen, and listen, listen and talk and listen some more.
Grace and peace beloved.
My 1st book Broke Down Christians is still available on amazon and on kindle here.