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Fight for Joy

John Piper offers 15 Biblical things we must do to fight for joy. (I can only list them today, and commend to you his book, "When I Don’t Desire God.") This list reminds me that faith does not produce inactivity, but God-centered activity:

1) Realize that authentic joy in God is a gift

2) Realize that joy must be fought for relentlessly

3) Resolve to attack all known sin in your life

4) Learn how to fight like a justified sinner

5) Realize that the battle is primarily a fight to see God for who he is

6) Meditate on the word of God day and night

7) Pray earnestly and continually for an inclination

8) Learn to preach to yourself rather than listen to yourself

9) Spend time with God-saturated people who help you see God and fight the fight

10) Be patient in the night of God's seeming absence

11) Get the rest, exercise, and diet your body needs

12) Make a proper use of God's revelation in nature

13) Read great books about God and biographies of great saints

14) Do the hard and loving thing for the sake of others—witness and mercy

15) Get a global vision for the cause of Christ and pour yourself out for the unreached.

When Jonathan Edwards was accused of promoting emotionalism in God's people, he wrote ("Some Thoughts Concerning the Revival in the Great Awakening"): "I should think myself in the way of my duty, to raise the affections of my hearers as high as I possibly can, provided they are affected with nothing but truth, and with affections that are not disagreeable to the nature of what they are affected with."

From a sermon by Glenn Durham, "A Dynamic Church Worships Joyfully" 8/5/2008

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