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Position Yourself for Joy

Position Yourself for Joy

I hear the silent grumble within my soul. I am not all that I should be. I am not everything I could be. And, naturally, I ask myself the diagnostic question of, “Why?”, only to answer that I do not experience and understand the love of God in a way that changes me at my core. So, what then? Is the LORD deficient in wisdom or love? No. I am deficient in my positioning.

What do I mean by that? Well, think of any sport. In basketball, football, soccer, golf, or just about anything, players must position themselves nearest the goal, end zone, basket, or hole in order to give themselves the greatest chance of success. It is so with the LORD. Let us look together at Psalm 84:4 then.

“Gladden the soul of your servant, for to you O LORD, do I lift up my soul.”

First, then, “To you, O LORD, do I lift up my soul.” David lifts his soul to the LORD, why? Why lift our soul to the LORD? Is the soul lacking? Is the soul tired and weary? Is the soul short on hope and faith? Well, yes. Our lives will give us our fill of these. And so, when we lift our soul to the LORD, what might we receive?

The second clause shows us. “Gladden the soul of your servant.” He seeks gladness and joy in God. Well, then, he must want to experience joy and gladness. And he must believe that the LORD is sufficient to meet him in such a way that he will definitively experience it. He lifts his soul to the LORD, for he wants the LORD to lift up his soul. What might we learn?

We should position ourselves to receive from the LORD. If we do not seek him, should we expect to find him? Yes, he is sometimes found by those who do not seek him (Isaiah 65:1), but we should aim to be around him and interact with him, intertwining the pursuits of our soul with the Spirit and the desires and the will of the LORD. Then we will find blessedness, and, lifting our souls to the LORD, we will find gladness, for he will gladden the soul that rises to meet him.

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Jared Odenbeck

Jared Odenbeck is a professional soccer player from Charlotte, NC. Jared graduated from Wake Forest University in December 2016 with a degree in English and Journalism. His greatest desire for his writing is that it would awaken the western Church to pure Gospel-centered truth and recapture the essence of unadultered Christianity.

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