Updated: Nov 15, 2020
Today we live in a heavily performance-based, accolade-based, achievement-based culture. These characteristics are not bad in and of themselves but in some ways have come in conflict with authenticity, genuity, gratitude and sometimes purity. We do things with the motive to be seen, to bring attention to ourselves. For some reason we have a need for external validation or acknowledgment. We want people to acknowledge who we are, what we are, what we have done, what we have accomplished or even what God has done for us. But can you rejoice alone?
Can you joyfully appreciate what God has done in your life with no one else there to celebrate? Can you stand alone and appreciate what you have accomplished without anyone knowing? Much like God at the beginning of creation who made many things and He praised the work of His hands calling it blessed and saying it was good; with no one else there to appreciate it. Can you relish in the grace and power that it required God to manifest your good fortune? Can you with a quiet spirit, meditate on His goodness wrought to you with simplicity? Have you lost the thrill and joy of God being good to you, minus the accolades and applause of men making it a further delight.
Is your joy and thankfulness for the blessings you have received a sufficient consolation or do you feel that you still lack unless you have shown what you have?
Don't misunderstand the point. We must rejoice with those who rejoice (Romans 12:15). Celebrating and rejoicing with others is important and beautiful. The question is: are you rejoicing yet? Are you rejoicing over what God has done or do you need the whole world to know first before you offer your praise and thanks to God with the extravagance of your personal love and lavishing performed in private?
In simplest terms, is your joy coming from what God has done or from knowing that others know the good fortune that has come your way? One leads to wholeness while the other leads to a gift that is partially received, with a sincere appreciation never being achieved and missing satisfaction. Remember the 10 lepers (Luke 17:11-19)? Nine lepers left after being healed and went to rejoice, celebrate and show others their new found blessing. In the process, they missed out on the true blessing and miracle: their wholeness.
One leper returned to privately thank and appreciate Jesus for the miracle. No one was with him to celebrate yet, no cameras, no applauses, no pats on the back but a heart of pure gratitude and appreciation not conditioned by those around.
Is your excitement over God's blessings conditioned by the excitement of those who rejoice with you, or can you appreciate the depth of His love even in solitude? Will you shower Him with true heart felt thanks and praise for what He has done when no one is around? Will you keep that same energy? Will you rejoice alone? Will you be made whole? Can you rejoice alone?
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