JOY 1: The Bears routed the [hapless] Rams yesterday, making up for a spanking administered by the Packers last week. The Bears now lead the division, which isn’t saying much, because they’ve only won one more than they’ve lost. I miss watching Bears games… it was a great way to finish a Sunday. Living the Pacific Time Zone, the games are over before I get home. My church in Chicago, Windy City Community Church, used to add “Go Bears!” to the benediction. Is that unspiritual? i miss it.
JOY 2: Jon & the worship team did a great job in this weekend’s worship. The highlight for me was the song, “Bring the Rain.” Very powerful and moving. An unplugged feel with all acoustic instruments: 2 guitars, piano (a real one), sax, kongas, and bass (electric). Also, a team worked really hard to repaint our church auditorium, and it looks beautiful. It went from 80’s mauve and grey to Pottery Barn chic. A warm feel–thanks to Margi, my awesome wife, and Sarah M for picking out colors… and for Margi and Dave Hall for getting a team together… And thanks to everybody who volunteered to paint & get ‘er done!
JOY 3: I finished my series on How to Recession Proof Your Inner World. I spoke on how to build the Royal Palace of the Soul. Here’s a great quote (not mine) from the sermon, from an old time Baptist preacher named Octavius Winslow. I would love to have this spirit…
“The religion of Christ is the religion of JOY. Christ came to take away our sins, to roll off our curse, to unbind our chains, to open our prisonhouse, to cancel our debt; in a word, to give us the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness. Is not this joy? Where can we find a joy so real, so deep, so pure, so lasting? There is every element of joy – deep, ecstatic, satisfying, sanctifying joy – in the gospel of Christ. The believer in Jesus is essentially a happy man. The child of God is, from necessity, a joyful man. His sins are forgiven, his soul is justified, his person is adopted, his trials are blessings, his conflicts are victories, his death is immortality, his future is a heaven of inconceivable, unthought-of, untold, and endless blessedness. With such a God, such a Saviour, and such a hope, is he not, ought he not, to be a joyful man?”
[Octavius Winslow, pastor from the 1800’s]
JOY 4: “But now I come to You, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have My joy fulfilled in themselves. (John 17:13, NKJV).