By Drew Zuverink
"I will rejoice in doing them good and will assuredly plant them in the land with all of my heart and soul."
"I will rejoice in doing them good." Such a simple sentence, one that we might read right past without noticing something so special about the God that we serve.
Many people in our world believe that God is a selfish dictator with a big ego. They view God's commandments as rigid and even hurtful sometimes. In the eyes of many people God is never happy and he never smiles. It's hard for them to believe in a God who truly does good to people. But a God without emotion or a God who is always scowling is not the God of the Bible. God rejoices when he does good to his people.
Rejoice means to have or to show strong feelings of joy or delight.
Friends, God indeed does smile. He smiles when he sees us smile because of something good that he has done for us. When my wife Alyssa and I danced around my old apartment when we found out that our offer was accepted for a house - God smiled down on us. Our rejoicing over his goodness made him smile. When you get an acceptance letter for college and you share that special news with your family and everyone is smiling and hugging - God smiles. Whenever you end up with the man or woman of your dreams, the one who follows God and loves him passionately, the one who gives you all sorts of feelings inside, the one who loves you and treats you so well - when that happens and you lay in bed smiling and thanking God - God smiles right back.
You might be thinking, "I knew this already, what's the big deal." If that is you, do you realize it could have been so very different? What if the God who created the universe and holds everything in his hand did not enjoy giving good gifts to humans? What if the sovereign God didn't really care if humans were happy, sad or depressed? What if he was quick to become angry instead of slow to punish? What if the all powerful God was not patient and forgiving? What if God was not such a good and gracious God and when we sinned he became unwilling to continue a relationship with us anymore?
What a horrible existence that would be! We take the goodness of God for granted. What a wonderful, gracious, generous, kind and loving God that we serve! I am so thankful that a God with so much power is as perfect and righteous and good as our God is.
Let it sink in today that God rejoices and celebrates putting smiles on our faces. There is a special joy that he gets when he is able to make one of his children smile and laugh. And think of it this way - God is with you everywhere and in everything that you do. Why does that matter? It matters because it means that he not only makes you smile with big things but with little things too. For example; Are, or were, your parents only a part of your life when something big came up? Did you only spend time with your parents when you were sad? Do your parents only want to hear about your day if something spectacular happened? I hope not! Loving parents enjoy sharing every kind of day with their child. In fact it's the "little things" that mean so much to parents and children. Some of your favorite memories with your family members are probably little inside jokes or maybe being tucked in at night or maybe even wrestling in the living room.
In the same way God does not only want to be a part of our lives when we have a big decision to make, when we want something, or when we are deeply hurting. He wants to be a part of everything that we do. He wants to hear about our days no matter how normal they seem. He wants to be able to make you smile with little things and with big things.
So come to see God as a part of your everyday life experiences. Come to realize that he is behind many of your smiles - and come to believe that he smiles watching you smile.