Join us this Sunday! In-Person 9:00am & 10:45am, Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm

Join us this Sunday! In-Person 9:00am & 10:45am, Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm

Join us at the next Sunday worship service:
9:00am & 10:45am,
Online 9:00am, 10:45am & 5:00pm


“Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (ESV).

If you wanted to sum up Christianity in four words, what four words would you use? One choice is to rejoice in the Lord. That may be why Paul repeats the phrase over and over and over again. Philippians 3:1 (ESV) says, “Finally, my brothers, rejoice in the Lord….” He knows he has said this many times before, but it needed to be said and more importantly, it needed to be heard.

There are plenty of reasons to celebrate God, but how do you rejoice? When you think about the act of rejoicing, you probably imagine jumping for joy. But, from a biblical standpoint, what does it mean to rejoice? Rejoicing was a call to joy.  Joy is more than just happiness. Rejoicing does not always look like happiness. You can be hurting and still choose to delight in the Lord. You can choose to see the bigger picture and be grateful for what God has done and is doing with your life. Rejoicing is a choice. As Christians, we are called to joy, not to hopelessness and negativity. We should focus on what God has done for us instead of dwelling on our suffering and pain. We are called to share that joy and hope with others.

Learning how to rejoice in all things is the Biblical mandate, but it is not a statement but an exercise. It is a faith-stretching exercise, one that is all about perspective. Maybe you were just laid off or had an unplanned major expense pop up out of nowhere. It is counterintuitive to think you could rejoice in those things, but that is what God commands us to do.

Maybe you haven’t been hit by “hard times,” but you are overwhelmed by all the small things going wrong in your life. Maybe you have too many balls in the air, and the little things at work and at home with the kids have you flustered and overwhelmed. How are you supposed to rejoice?

The answer is you don’t. You rejoice in the Lord. Philippians 4:4 (ESV) says, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.” This command doesn’t mean to find joy in your hard times, but in the Lord during your hard times. Your hope is in God, not your marital or job status. He has a future for you, not your bank statement or your ring finger. You don’t embrace health concerns; you embrace God. Thank Him for being there and walking with you and allowing you to overcome the world because He “has overcome the world.” He is also not calling me to rejoice in my overwhelming feelings; He is calling me to rejoice in Him.

Even if you don’t feel happy about something, tell God – out loud – that you trust Him. Thank him for what He has done and what He is doing. Ask him for joy and an eternal perspective. Paul doesn’t just say to rejoice always but also to pray continually and give thanks in all circumstances. Just being in a conversation with God delivers so much peace and joy.

No matter what is happening, choose to rejoice. Pray continually. Give thanks in all circumstances.

Discussion Questions:

  1. What would daily life look like if we rejoiced in all things? 
  2. What can we do this week to start rejoicing in the Lord?