Joy That Lasts

Note: This is the first in a three-part series on Psalm 63. A psalm of David. When he was in the Desert of Judah.1 You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. 2 I have seen you in the sanctuary and beheld your power and your glory. 3 Because your love is better than life, my lips will…

An Invitation to Joy

Clap your hands, all you nations; shout to God with cries of joy. 2 For the Lord Most High is awesome, the great King over all the earth. 3 He subdued nations under us, peoples under our feet. 4 He chose our inheritance for us, the pride of Jacob, whom he loved. 5 God has ascended amid shouts of joy, the Lord amid the sounding of trumpets. 6 Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises. 7 For God is the King…

On Joy in Crisis

At the start of his letter to the tribes scattered throughout the Roman Empire, James writes, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (1:2-4). If we are honest, we would admit that joy is not our default response when trials…

Faith and Feelings

As evangelicals, we tend to promote “faith not feeling” as a necessary reminder that we do not live by our changing emotions (driven by changing circumstances) but by the unchanging rock of God’s Word and character. All this is right and good. But is there more to it than that?   Dietrich Bonhoeffer, reflecting on Spinoza, wrote, “Emotions are not expelled by reason, but only by stronger emotions.”[1] I suspect there is a good bit…