In my lifetime I have never lived in the time of a pandemic! The presence of COVID-19 has created a world filled with uncertainty and fear. Grocery stores have a shortage of toilet paper and canned goods. Schools and universities have moved classes to online only while postponing graduations. Assisted Living Homes have closed their doors to outside visitors and families. Hospitals are limiting visitors to one per patient. Travel to and from Europe has been postponed as have local forms of public transportation. The stock market has plunged creating financial instability. Churches have gone to online worship services. Social distancing has been highly encouraged. Our world is changing.

Yet, in the midst of uncertainty and fear how are we living joyfully? Hear Psalm 16:11 – “You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of  joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore”. 

Living joyfully is not defined by what you don’t have. Look at what you do have! You may have enough toilet paper and canned goods, an education and a place to work. You may have your health, a form of transportation and some financial stability.  You may even have a church family. Most importantly, though, as a believer, you have joy in the saving grace of Jesus Christ. All this world has to offer will soon fade away, but the joy of the Lord is forever.

Psalm 16 brings us reassurance that all we need is found in the Lord. The Psalmist begins asking God to preserve him because God is all he needs. He then acknowledges there is delight among fellow believers, that he has been chosen by the Lord and in him are pleasant places. God is his beautiful inheritance. He will never be abandoned by the Lord.  Because of these things, the psalmist’s heart is joyful.

I encourage you to read Psalm 16. Not only one time, but over and over again. Ask yourself if you find joy in God as your safest refuge (v.1); is he your supreme treasure (v.6); what does it mean to you that God is the Sovereign Lord (v.5) and do you trust his counsel for your life (v.7-8). If so, then begin living joyfully as a believer filled with the Spirit of the living God in this uncertainty of COVID-19.

Go out living joyfully in the Lord!

Chaplain Val