“… Weeping may endure for a night, But joy comes in the morning.” — Psalms 30:5
The present condition of our world is cause for much sadness. Wars and rumors of wars. Our nation is rocked by racial tensions. Natural disasters causing loss of life and displacement for millions of human beings globally. Our children are dying daily in our streets from gun violence. And, the gap between the haves and the have nots continues to widen.
People are living in the margins of our society at record numbers. Families are fractured. Marriages are mangled. Corporations are calloused and disloyal. Profits over people is the norm. Our public schools are in shambles, and our children are falling further behind educationally.
No one seems to have a viable answer to our present-day dilemma. Many in our society encourage protests against the establishment. The church tells us to pray and have faith that things will get better. Politicians bicker over which policies are better suited to fix the massive array of problems we face daily. And everyday citizens like you and me often don’t know which way to turn for help and guidance.
It’s becoming harder and harder to maintain our joy. Joy is an emotion invoked by well-being, success, triumph or good fortune. How do we find and maintain our joy in a world full of sorrows?
In Psalms 30, David is reflecting on the struggles of life. What began as a personal prayer in a time of great sickness came to be used as a national prayer. Israel was seriously sick and in danger of death. But she had been restored and her enemies were not allowed to triumph over her. This psalm demonstrates the right attitude when in facing trouble or difficulty. Whether the troubles and difficulties are of our own doing or whether they are caused by others, here’s what the Psalmist wants all of us to remember.
First, The Lord rescued us. In Psalms 30:1, David states boldly, “I will extol the Lord …” To extol means to “lift up” or “exalt.” In essence, David was saying that in the midst of our pain, problems or perplexities, we must lift up and exalt the name of the Lord. The Lord is above all of our troubles, and the Lord promises to rescue us from them all. The right attitude is not to focus on our troubles. The right attitude is to focus on the fact that the Lord gives us triumph over all of our troubles.
Secondly, we are to remember according to David’s testimony in Psalms 30:3 that the Lord spares us. David is reflecting on the fact that he should have been dead or consumed by his enemies, but the Lord spared him and kept him alive. We can depend on the Lord to do the same for us.
Finally, we are to follow David’s example and praise the Lord! Psalms 30:4 admonishes us to “Sing praises to the Lord …” and “give thanks to Him.” Why? David reminds us in Psalms 30:5 that “… weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” Whatever we are dealing with will not last forever. The Lord is merciful, and every new day we are granted by the Lord brings new mercies.
Regardless of what’s going on in the world around us, our confession must unequivocally be: “This joy I have, the world didn’t give it to me and the world can’t take it away!”
Dr. Preston T. Adams III is senior pastor at Amazing Grace Christian Church in Indianapolis. Reach Dr. Adams at firstname.lastname@example.org.