There is something in us that pushes for self-destruction. A stubborn childishness that claims “can’t” when the truth is “won’t”. That hates things we ought to love. That clings to habits that shame us. That pushes and pushes and pushes and exhausts us.
And so we read another chapter in a novel when I know we ought to finish our work. Drink another overpriced coffee to lift our spirits. Lie down for just a quick nap, run away from another friendly chat, hide and worry and turn inside ourselves.
And no matter how miserable, how downcast, how hopeless we become, we do it again tomorrow, because tomorrow, the wrong thing still feels desperately right.
Do you know these verses?
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits,
Who forgives your iniquity,
Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
Who satisfies you with good
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
I think that phrase is wildly convicting – “forget not all his benefits”. It’s a tendency I find sneaking up on me all the time.
It’s so easy for our lives to become a to-do list, without joy, without purpose and largely without God. It’s easy to look at the things we ought to do, the choices we know we ought to make, and to see only hardship and suffering. It easy to think our only hope for happiness or rest is in listening to that destructive voice.
But God promises something SO much greater than what we can see.
Our Sunday Studies!
This series of Sunday studies is all about the Discipline of Rejoicing (how great does that sound?!).
Every week I’ll be releasing a short (we’ll aim for a 5 minute read!) study that highlights the benefits of the Lord, along with some reflection questions to help take that big truth into the nooks and crannies of real life.
Our prayer is that as we study the Word of God you’ll find yourself seeing and celebrating the way God works daily in your life, and that you’ll be ready to rise up with David and sing, “Bless the Lord, O My Soul!”
Are you in?! (Be in! It’ll be great!)
Here how can you be involved:
#1 – Join us!
Once a week we’ll be posting studies here on the Dear Traveler blog.
If you’re not a regular blog-reader, might we suggest an e-mail subscription? It just means that every week when a new study goes up, you’ll get it handily delivered to your inbox. (So hassle free!)
We fully believe things sink in better if you have a reason to think about them often. So if you’d like an extra nudge, please follow us on Facebook or Instagram to get some verses or quotes to help you think more about the week’s study.
#2 – Memorize with us!
Every month we’ll be working hard to memorize a passage of scripture that builds into our study. We are really convinced that memorizing is one of the best ways to put this work of “remembering” into practice. We’d LOVE you to join us.
To help make the memorizing easier, we’ll be posting free phone and desktop backgrounds each month with our memory verse. You can find the first one available here!
#3 – Find a friend!
Everything is easier if you do with a team. If you’re serious about growing in rejoicing, one of the easiest ways to stick to your goal is to do it with someone else. Start a text message! Or a Facebook group! Or just call a good friend! Bring those discussion questions out of the privacy of your journal, and in to the Christian community.
We cannot wait. We hope you can’t either. Catch you next Sunday.