Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Let Joy

I'm a word nerd.  

If there was a club for word nerds, I'd want in.  Words are amazing!  I love all that you can express with them--and am sometimes frustrated by lack of just the right one.  I've secretly longed to be Greek just so I could have more to choose from.  If I had loads of money and time, I'd get a degree in linguistics just for the fun of discovering more of the wonder.  I'm so convinced of the fun of words that I'm sure others would think they were fun too, if only they knew!

Take for instance a little-known, virtually overlooked, yet profoundly impactful word...a word that, once you recognize it's full meaning, changes your entire reading of the Bible.  Seriously.  Three common letters that have the power to change your understanding.  What is this word you ask?  Let.  Yep, that was it--slow down and reread if you missed it.  Let.

The word "let" as it's translated into English means to grant permission, allow, or to loosen, slacken, relax.  Relax.  Oh, yeah, that's the one I need a reminder on some days.  Relax.  Let go of your need to control.  Whether it's control of my own world or control of how everyone else manages theirs, sometimes I need to let.

I've been thinking about the connection between joy and let.

Along with secretly wishing I was Greek, I've also secretly wished I was African-American.  This is partly because I'm convinced that I could sing better, but mostly because I like the way they let the joy roll in church.  I wish I could just let out the joy-whoops like those mommas do in the movies.  Full disclosure:  I know I can because I've tried this at home.  Perhaps what I mean is that I'd like to do it any time the joy bubbles up without giving anyone whom I dearly love a heart attack.

I've found a bit of scriptural evidence that God doesn't mind a little volume and enthusiasm.  He's even granted permission to let the godly rejoice and be filled with joy.

But let the godly rejoice.
Let them be glad in God's presence.
Let them be filled with joy.

Sing praise to God and to his name!
Sing loud praises to him who rides the clouds.
His name in the LORD--
rejoice in his presence!

He's granted permission.  I need to relax and be filled with joy in His presence.

Let yourself relax (relinquish control) and let His joy flood your soul.  All those things preplexing and worrying you?   Let go of control and let the joy fill that space.  It's often when I'm not looking, when I'm letting the joy bubble up, that all that stuff becomes clear anyway.

And if there's ever a time you feel a bit uncomfortable with someone's enthusiasm level, just remember that God said it was good.  Let them rejoice.

I'm going to go sing some loud praises now.


Psalm 68:3-4

1 comment:


    I whole-heartedly agree with the above post.

    I might need to reference it anytime people give me funny looks for being too rowdy in public ;)