Thursday, July 14, 2016

Happiness in God's Kingdom

Chuckle:  What would America be if all its people were in their cars?  An INCARNATION.
Quote: “Happiness is inward, and not outward; and so, it does not depend on what we have, but on what we are.” --Henry van Dyke

"Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 5:3 NIV).
When we come to God with empty hands unable to help ourselves -- spiritually broke and destitute, God promises to bring us happiness in his kingdom. Are you happy this morning? I mean "really happy?" If not, would you venture a guess as to the reason? If you are truly happy, I doubt you would have any difficulty understanding the reason for such happiness. When Jesus says the poor in spirit are blessed (happy), he is teaching us the secret to supreme and enduring joy.
In our passage, the literal Greek reads: "Theirs and theirs alone is the kingdom of God." And furthermore, it is theirs right now -- "is," not "will be." Even now the Holy Spirit dwells within you if you know Christ as Savior. That's where God's kingdom is today -- in the hearts of Christians. Jesus said: "The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, 'Here is it," or "there it is,' because the kingdom of God is within you" (Luke 17:21 NIV).
As believers, God's kingdom is ours right now. However, the sad reality is that many are left out. The kingdom is only for the poor in spirit. Others are left in darkness because of unbelief, arrogance, and pride. Oswald Chambers says: "The bedrock in Jesus Christ's kingdom is poverty, not possessions; not decisions for Christ, but a sense of absolute futility -- I cannot begin to do it for myself. Then Jesus says -- 'Blessed (happy) are you!'"
So, how do we become poor in spirit? First, we repent of and ask forgiveness for our sins -- we receive Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord. Then, as Christians, we should turn off the voices of the world and listen to the voice of the One true God. Find out who this holy God really is. Study his Word faithfully to see the eternal, almighty, true and infinite God. Then pray that He will humble us and make us broken-hearted, contrite, and poor in spirit. The one who breaks your heart and humbles you will exalt you with inexplicable joy in his kingdom. Consider this definition of "humility."
"Humility is perfect quietness of heart. It is to expect nothing, to wonder at nothing that is done to me, to feel nothing done against me. It is to be at rest when nobody praises me, and when I am blamed or despised. It is to have a blessed home in the Lord, where I can go in and shut the door, and kneel to my Father in secret, and am at peace as in a deep sea of calmness, when all around and above me is trouble." Andrew Murray
In Summary: God wants to give you His kind of happiness and peace. What do we have to do? We must tell God, "I am nothing. I am a sinner. I am guilty." We should pray: "God, have mercy on me, a sinner." As Christians, when we humble ourselves before Him, and realize He is the only source of real happiness, His Holy Spirit will fill our hearts with unspeakable joy.
Love, Jerry & Dotse


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