But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
And in His law he meditates day and night. (Psalm 1:2)
If you read my last post alone without this one, you might have thought I was trying to teach you some legalism. Legalism is following the laws while missing the point. The point isn’t just to abstain from the wicked, the sinner, and the scoffer’s way of thinking.
If that is all you do then all you have is a void. Your mind is designed to be filled. That void needs to be filled. So I am not advocating creating a void and leaving it but swapping one way of thinking for another. This is what the Bible calls repentance.
Learn to Swap
The Bible doesn’t tell you to repent because God wants to give you new rules, but He wants to give you new life. He wants to swap out slavery for freedom, and superficial joy that has a shelf-life for one that never expires.
When you avoid the thought processes that are antagonistic to God, you open up room for thinking the way God thinks. God actually isn’t a joy-sucker, but a joy-giver, though sometimes it is a painful journey getting there. Christ Himself had to walk a painful path to access a greater joy. Hebrews 12:2 says,”… who for the joy set before Him endured the cross.”
Crucifixion was a painful journey to joy, but Christ Himself thought the journey worth it. I am attributing joy in Psalm 1:2 to delight, and the blessedness that I discussed in vs. 1. Why is joy so important?
Why should joy be a priority for us?
It is so central because it is who God is. I Peter 1:3 calls God “blessed,” which isn’t some mysterious, archaic, and religious terminology, but it means happy. It describes joy. Ephesians 1:3 says, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.” God is happy and gives us happiness because the best thing He can give us is what He is, and God is the very essence of joy.
That joy comes as a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22). That Spirit in us was something Christ paid a mighty price for. He endured crucifixion so He would access greater joy and so we would too. If joy isn’t a priority for you, then you have a thought process in you that is rebellious to the nature of God. Good news is that those that have trusted in Christ’s redemptive work personally for them have the Holy Spirit, and the name gives away what He does. The Spirit makes you holy.
If your delight is in something else besides the words that come from God’s mouth than you are selling yourself short. If you can proactively learn to replace your thoughts with God’s you can “…taste and see that the Lord is good (Psalm 34:8).”
Lock the Doors!
You can get a taste of His joy. I should tell the second half of that verse because it is important to know. “Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him (Ps. 34:8).” When you choose to barricade your mind in God’s word that means other joy-sucking ways of thinking cannot get in. You are happy when you do so.
You will be so happy in Him that you will be addicted to joy. Anyone that has been a drug addict or knows one, knows that drug addicts will do anything or go anywhere to get a hit. If you don’t like me using language like this, I would tell you that all of us were born to be addicted, but only to God and not the other junk we put in ourselves.
Opiates, marijuana, cocaine and everything else is just a demonically instituted mask to replace who we were really meant to be addicted to. The difference between being addicted to God and His joy and drugs is this. One drug promises but never delivers, and the other promises and delivers.
It’s Time to Get a New Dealer
Some people give their lives and families away for meth, and essentially lose their life. All you get for that is death. If you lose your life for Christ, then you find it (Matt. 16:25). In the life that Christ gives you have joy that permeates your mind. A joy that doesn’t wear off, and keeps you consistently coming after the medium of it, (or dealer, for sake of analogy). You will find whatever way you can to get this joy, through reading, memorization, and just thinking on and about God’s word. For those that have been close enough to this sin to know, there is one thing on a drug addict’s mind. If your drug is joy, you can be sure that God’s word is right there with it.
It's Time to Get a New Dealer: Article by Chase O'Dell - Founder of Bridgeway Ministries