“Rejoice in the Lord always” A Lent Devotional

by Glenna Hajek

Philippians 4:4 (KJV)

Rejoice in the Lord always; And again, I say rejoice.

Can you rejoice and cry at the same time? In my case, the answer is yes.

Recently I’ve cried tears of happiness, rejoicing in evidence that God is healing a bitter break in a family relationship.

I’ve cried tears of sorrow at the news of other long-time relationships ending, broken for now, but rejoicing in the awareness that God is working, even in times of difficulty and misunderstanding.

This is such a simple verse, an easy song to carry in my back pocket and bring out when joy or sorrow hits me. I sometimes sing it when I walk at the lake and see beauty—the birds, the water, the flowers—and feel the warmth of the sun, the fresh wind.

And it’s handy when I’m desperate and sad, as I have been sometimes in the last few years.

Three words: Rejoice. Always. Again.

Rejoice, meaning revel, praise, worship, celebrate, delight, glory. I express joy in the Creator, the Father. I celebrate the Son’s sacrifice, the empty tomb of Easter. I thank the Holy Spirit for comfort and gentle correction.

Rejoice Always. Meaning all the time, in whatever circumstances. It’s easy to rejoice when the world is beautiful, at the smell of a newborn baby’s head or hearing a melody by Bach. Not so easy when hit by a ton of bricks with a terrible diagnosis. Or grief at losing your mother. This verse reminds me to rejoice in those circumstances as well. Though my heart is breaking, He’s there.

Rejoice Again. Carry this verse in your back pocket. Pull it out, over and over. Say it, sing it. The words have a simple but powerful message. We rejoice in the Lord always, and again. Jesus Christ has risen. He has risen indeed.

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