|Christian Singles living purposefully for Christ!|
(October 29, 2002)
I'd Rather Have Jesus
By Fern Horst
"Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD." (Jeremiah 9:23-24)
I enjoyed spending some time with an old friend this weekend. Last year she gave birth to a beautiful baby girl - a child she has wanted for years. I can't blame her for now rejoicing proudly over her daughter. I know I'd do the same!
In fact, I've often rejoiced proudly at times in my own life, and so have we all. Joyous events we've long anticipated, accomplishments we've worked hard for, acquiring something we've always wanted, regaining lost physical health and ability - all of these things cause us to glow with happiness and joy.
The Bible cautions us, though, about rejoicing over these things more than we glory in the Lord. According to Webster's, the word "glory" means "to rejoice proudly." Perhaps using this definition can help us to apply these verses more specifically to our own lives:
"Let not the wise man rejoice proudly in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man [rejoice proudly] in his might, let not the rich man [rejoice proudly] in his riches: But let him that [rejoices proudly] [rejoice proudly] in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD.."
Having a baby, getting married, graduating from college or trade school, getting a job promotion, reaching a financial goal, being able to travel - all of these things we naturally rejoice over, and rightly so. But all of these things pale in comparison to what we have when we know the Lord Jesus. If we know Him, we have more cause to rejoice than acquiring any earthly possession or experiencing any earthly event. In fact, even if life never offers us any of those things we so long for, we still have every reason to rejoice daily over the abundant life we have in Jesus.
When George Beverly Shea was 23, he faced a decision: should he accept a high-paying and well-respected position as a secular singer in New York City? Or should he continue to sing in churches and for Christian radio programs? As he was sitting at the piano preparing for the upcoming Sunday service, he found a poem by Mr. Rhea F. Miller. He composed music for the poem and used that song for the service. It was also the beginning of sharing this song and many others with audiences around the world. The words of this song helped to determine his decision that day - a decision that would determine the course of his life and would result in touching many lives through the songs he's sung in the Lord's service:
I'd Rather Have Jesus
I'd rather have Jesus than silver or gold;
Than to be the king of a vast domain or be held in sin's dread sway!
I'd rather have Jesus than men's applause;
He's fairer than lilies of rarest bloom;
© 2002 Fern Horst
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