“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” – Psalm 16:11
The world tell us it’s all about getting what you want as fast as you can get it. The problem is, once you get “it” you feel satisfied only for a short amount of time. Then? You need the next big “thing” and so on and so forth. “It” is never enough, we’re always chasing the next thing hoping that it will finally be the perfect long term solution that satisfies that deep longing in our souls for true joy.
The good news to this problem is we have the solution, truly Good News. We were created by God and for God, by love and for love. God created us and the things we enjoy. Sex, money, power, all from God and all created as good things! Not only did God create those things and us, He’s wise enough to know how those things should be enjoyed. This is something I’m thankful for more and more because I constantly prove how unwise I am by enjoying things incorrectly and giving them more power than they should have over the joy in my life which results in disappointment. God then took this wisdom of how things He created should be enjoyed and wired us in such a way that we are fully and truly satisfied by one thing, Him.
This doesn’t mean we aren’t supposed to enjoy those things He created for us. He wants us to enjoy those things, but in such a way that we do just that, enjoy them, but never treasure them. We are to enjoy things in such a way that says we are thankful for them, but we don’t treasure them above God. We are to be satisfied more in the Giver than the gift itself. When we enjoy things in their proper place and the way God intended, it can bring an added joy to our lives, He can bless it and be apart of it and most importantly, it doesn’t hinder our ability to enjoy Him. It actually increases our enjoyment of Him when we enjoy things properly because we aren’t replacing Him and idolizing something that cant satisfy, but we are enjoying something as a gift and doing so with a thankful heart towards the One who’s given it. When your parents give you gifts on Christmas are you thankful towards them? How much more so should we be towards a God who’s given us everything that we are and have?
Secondly, when we enjoy things out of their proper place we’re giving them a responsibility for bringing us joy that they will not be able to maintain, it will eventually leave us empty or sad. When that thing you’re idolizing becomes unavailable or disappears, what will happen? Even if it’s always available it’s impossible to indulge in it 24 hours a day! It’s like running to a well to fill a bucket with holes in it, you’re running home with it with joy that you have something to quench your thirst only to see that the water was there temporarily. Temporary is something foreign to an eternal God.
If you’re already a Christian and have experienced this overwhelming joy and fulfillment a relationship with Jesus brings then you know exactly what I’m talking about. If not, and you’re seeking that fulfillment and have tried everything but Jesus, give him a chance, why not give a chance to the One who created you and died to know you, who could know you better than Him?
As a christian this verse (psalm 16:11) will become more and more powerful in our lives as the truth of these words set themselves in our hearts, but it does not mean we won’t fall short. Jesus died the death we were meant to die because we couldn’t live up to God’s standards, we are fallen. But, He also lived the life we were meant to live, as an example for us to follow. We too often overlook this and just focus on His death that paid for our sins (which is still something to be extremely grateful for). Although we will fall short, we shouldn’t beat ourselves up too much when we fall, but we shouldn’t take it lightly either! We will never be perfect, but God gave us His Holy Spirit for a reason, to continually strengthen us to be more like Christ and live how He lived. Living how Christ lived means holding God as supremely valuable in the way we enjoy things. People make the mistake of thinking this is all about rule following but you won’t see it that way when you fully realize God created us, what we enjoy, and is wise enough to know how they should be enjoyed. That’s a life changing realization and can’t be repeated enough. It is a joy to follow God. It is the greatest joy to know God, because He made it so. At the end of the day, sin is unbelief in the promises of God, if you believe that “in His presence is fullness of joy” as his word says, you won’t sin. But when we do, we have an advocate in Jesus and God is just to forgive us. Take that leap of faith and get in on the life God has made available to us to live out, it will satisfy that longing you’ve been yet to satisfy.