Rejoice | The Worship Shift
We Rejoice and thank God for the trials, knowing that when we are weak, we are dependent on him and he is strong …
Addiction is a worship problem. Our hearts are constantly worshipping. We are relentlessly looking for things unto which we can ascribe worth, value, allegiance, and honor. Therefore, to enjoy the Lord’s victory over our sin, we must take our minds and eyes off of our lesser loves, and our focus away from what we don’t have, and put them on Christ. In doing so, we place our hope in his all-encompassing power. This is the work of rejoicing.
When the Apostle Paul was bound in prison and writing to his fellow brothers and sisters in Philippi, he was deprived of all earthly gratification, hope, and pleasure. His encouragement to the church was to “rejoice, again I say rejoice.” He wrote these words not only in the midst of his own conflict, but also after addressing a strong disagreement and struggle amongst two sisters in the Philippian church—Euodia and Syntyche.
Why is Paul’s exhortation to rejoice well-timed in its wisdom and insight when dealing with sinful desires waging war in us or between us? The answer is in the transfer of worship. Paul recognizes that when our desires “want what they want,” we are hopelessly enslaved to our own selfishness. The only way to stop giving into a lesser love is to worship a better one—one that can fully satisfy.
When lost in sin, and in any addiction, to food, sex, physical abuse, or otherwise, we must realize that we are violating one of the number one tenants of the Westminster Catechism, which says that “the chief end of mankind is to glorify God by enjoying him forever.” God is the satisfier of our souls. In him is found the only true, lasting, and satisfying joy. The command to rejoice is the only logical response to recognizing our sinful nature. In doing so, we acknowledge that it is God and God alone who can meet our needs.
Rejoice, again I say rejoice.
*For further reading in the Bible: Philippians 4:1 – 4:8; 1st Peter 4:7 – 4:11; 1st Corinthians 10:23 – 10:33
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