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13 May 2024

There Is a Back Door to Joy

Isaiah 55:1

“Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat!”

Isaiah 55:1

The ones who find joy in God are the people who have discovered a deep thirst in their own souls: “Come, everyone who thirsts” (55:1), and those who feel that they are bankrupt: “Come… he who has no money” (55:1). They realise they don’t have what it takes to get what they need.

You can’t ask God to restore your soul until you know that your soul needs restoring. That’s why the barren woman, the deserted wife and the folks in the ruined city discover this joy. The woman with children, the happily married couple and the successful business person in the city often do not seek it. Their lives are so full that they never ask: What are children for? What is marriage for? What is the city for? Is there a higher purpose, a greater joy?

The default mode of the human heart is to seek joy in children, in marriage and in money. The Bible has a name for this: it is called idolatry and idolatry always fails.

Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted… Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied” (Matt. 5:3–4, 6).

When you know your soul needs restoring, you will ask God to restore your soul. This is why sorrow is often the back door to joy.

Have you discovered a deep thirst in your soul for greater joy in Christ?

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