"Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are
ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits." Matthew 7:15, 16.
Some time back I was watching a TV program of an actor going through the Himalaya Mountains. At one spot he spoke about making part of a movie there and they played a snippet. Hanging upon crosses were about 20 men. All were in agony, dying, and slumped. When one of them started singing, "Always look on the bright side of life, de dum de dum de dum de dum, always look on the bright side of life." One by one all the others joined in jigging up and down as they did so. It was hilarious and I have never forgotten it. What could these men possible be joyful about?
Sometimes Christians feel this way. Everything seems to be going wrong so what do they have to be joyful about? Scriptures tells us that "A merry heart doeth good like a medicine: but a broken spirit drieth the bones." Prov. 17:22. And to, "Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing." Psa. 100:2.
Jesus told His disciples, "Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake. Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets." Luke 6:22, 23. "These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33.
Paul admonished the Corinthians, "Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer." 1 Cor. 10:10. "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known." 1 Cor. 13:12. "There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it." 1 Cor. 10:13.
What wonderful promises we can claim when we believe God's Word and trust in Him. Not only this but Christ set us an example:
"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." Heb. 12:2.
You might ask what was the joy that was set before Him? No, it was not the cross which He endured. It was the knowledge that what He was to accomplish on the cross was to enable His earth brethren to gain eternal life. Salvation for anyone who wanted it was to be assured. The joy of taking His people home to live with Him for the ceaseless ages of eternity. That was what the joy was that was set before Him.
One last Scripture that should encourage us to always be cheerful is:
"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." Rom. 8:28.
So no matter what is happening in your life look on the bright side – something good will come out of everything if we let God have His way. If you cannot see the bright side, then try polishing the dull until it shines brightly.
© S. D. Goeldner, February, 2013. Last updated July,2020.
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