Then will I go unto the altar of God, unto God my exceeding joy: yea, upon the harp will I praise thee, O God my God. Psalm 43:4
Bacon and eggs, washed down withÂ coolÂ orange juice. A winning basket in the final seconds. A fresh evening breeze after a hot summer day, with a bowl of home-made ice cream. Morning snuggles with your family. A sunset painting the raincloudsÂ with variegated colors. A new satellite photo of some distant nebula. Placing the final piece of a 5000 piece puzzle.Â An unexpected $20 bill found in your pocket. A pillow at the end of an exhausting day of hard work. Were we to go on cataloguing such pleasures we would certainly be able to fill out endlessÂ volumes of joys and delights. All this to remind us that we live in a world of pleasure.
We live in God’s world, and in this world there are nerve endings. We are not just a line of code in some galactic super computer, with no way of expressing joy or experiencing delights.We live in God’sÂ world, and in this world there are nerve endings.Â We are not just a line of code in some galactic super computer, with noÂ way of expressing joy orÂ experiencing delights. Though God has perfectly ordered the universe, he has ordered it to include a tear duct in the corner of our eyes; these then spurt out water as we experience the delight of watching our toddler grow so quickly, or reunite with an old friend. He hasÂ ordered this world to includeÂ facial muscles that convert our feelings of joy intoÂ contagious smiles andÂ laughter.
Yes there is pain here in this world, lots of it, because of sin. But evenÂ in the pain, if we look closely, we can see that the Father’s hand isÂ working in it to bring about greater joy. The Psalmist calls us to look unto God as our exceeding joy; which means we must have some acquaintance with the more pedestrian joys of everyday life. YouÂ know, the sort of joy you experienceÂ when slipping on your favorite pair of slippers. These earthly joys certainly are intended by God to lift our spirits, but He has orchestrated them so that they have a “top floor”. They leave us longing for a Joy eternal, and the Psalmist teaches us to go to God and find in Him the never failing fountain of delight, joy and satisfaction.