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8 March -Enjoy

God smiles when we use our gifts and abilities, and enjoy life. Too often we can think God is so serious, and is only pleased when we are doing “spiritual things”, like reading the bible, praying, in church or telling others about Him. It’s great when we spend our time doing these things, but if we make God part of everything we do then all our pursuits become something we can relate to God in and bring Him joy.

It leads to us using our abilities to please God. We don’t bring a smile to His face when we hide our abilities, try to be someone else, and don’t use and develop our talents and gifts. There are few un-spiritual abilities, just mis-used ones.

When we are seeking to be all we are made to be, it releases, it brings freedom, and it draws people to us as we enjoy life more. God loves it when we live like that. Every act of enjoyment becomes an act of worship and praise to Him, especially when we include and thank Him for it. The bible says “He gives us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17)

God loves watching us enjoy life, just as I love watching my kids enjoying themselves.  A good parent loves their child at every stage of development.  They aren’t required to be perfect, or even mature in order for them to enjoy being with their child, and at times just watching them. God is the same, He doesn’t wait for us to get to maturity before He starts liking us. He loves us at every stage of our journey.

Matthew 6 in the bible talks about not worrying.  Its so easy to be overrun by the negatives, the (thorns), that we forget to enjoy the positives (the roses). I don’t mean just thinking or having positive confessions, but actually going out and enjoying being alive. About trying new things, having aspirations and goals, enjoying the blessing of a great meal, a good cup of coffee, or as my kids enjoyed today (especially my single adult daughter), watching your favorite football team train.

Sometimes just stopping and taking a moment to enjoy the simple pleasures of life can change your day and perspective. You learn to “stop and smell the roses”. As adults we can lose the wonder of the world and the joy in it. We need a reminder to stop, appreciate, reflect, taste, smell, hear, and see the good, and praise worthy, I want to give a shout about that, things in life. But that is how God thinks, and its how he wants us to live. He created us for bliss and we have an immense capacity for joy.

Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things”. (Philippians 4:8)

Life was given to us to be lived, breathed, and enjoyed. Sometimes we might need to take a step back and assess how much stress, toil and worrying we are doing, and how much enjoyment we aren’t experiencing.  Maybe we need to make some adjustments.  It’s easy to forget you only get this day once!

God wants us to use all our abilities, to step out and grow as a person. But He also want us to remember life is not a destination, but a journey to enjoy. The closer you get to God the more you want it to not just be about “how much pleasure I’m getting from my life, to how much pleasure and joy does God also get from my life”?

Jesus gave His life so that we could have life full, abundant and overflowing. (John 10:10) Perhaps today is a good day to assess where you may have let some thorns in, or just lost perspective of what life is really all about. We can’t get back yesterday, but we can stop, reflect and choose to enjoy every bit of the rest of our day, and all our tomorrow’s.

Prayer: Lord forgive me where I’ve got into toiling, worry and stress, and missed the joy and goodness you have placed in each day for me to enjoy. Open my eyes and heart so that I start to enjoy my life more. Help me see where I’ve fallen into the trap of believing the devils lies, and have only focused on the negatives.  In Jesus name amen.

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