HOW TO PRESERVE DIVINE JOY ?
You will show me the path of life; There are abundant joys before your face, everlasting delights at your right hand. Psalms 16:11
The man of God, Jonathan Edward, spent three days in the presence of God pleading for the salvation of England. When he emerged from this presence, those who saw him testified that his face was radiant with the glory of God. He had barely opened his Bible when several of those present turned to the Lord (cf. “Les héros de la foi” by Orlando Boyer, pp. 3-4).
Similarly, when Moses came out of the presence of God, his face was radiant. The Scriptures declare that there is abundant joy in the presence of God, and the psalmist also says that one is filled with joy before the face of God. Yes, the face of God is the essential key to being filled with joy and preserving it. It is written:
Moses came down from Mount Sinai, with the two tablets of the testimony in his hand as he came down from the mountain. And he did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with the Lord. (Exodus 34:29)
The radiance of Divine Joy depends on the focus of your heart. One who remains in the presence of God for an extended period will naturally radiate. The challenge is that, generally, more time is spent outside the presence of God when faced with sources of sadness or anger. How, then, can one preserve Divine Joy?
(1) A day in His courts is better than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:11)
It takes a thousand times longer outside to dissipate the effects of time spent before the face of God. Thus, the radiance you acquire in one hour in the presence of God will take about a thousand hours to dissipate. Being in the presence of God is very powerful. The challenge is to come before the face of God and remain there long enough to radiate. There is a difference between spending an hour in prayer and meditation and spending an hour before His face. As you can read in Psalms 16:11 and 21:7, it is only before His face that one is filled with joy. If you spend an hour in reading and prayer without being before His face, you will not radiate with joy. You must learn the art of staying before the face of God.
(2) Come before His face
“Moses came down from Mount Sinai, with the two tablets of the testimony in his hand as he came down from the mountain. And he did not know that the skin of his face shone because he had been talking with the Lord.” (Exodus 34:29)
Moses’ face shone because he had spoken with God.
Coming before the face is different from monologue prayer where you recite words, requests, and battles. A person’s face consists of the mouth, ears, eyes, etc. So, standing before His face is having a conversation with God, listening to Him, asking Him questions, waiting for His response, etc.
Talking to God in your prayer moments will fill you with joy and make you radiate. Standing before His face is also contemplating Him. The passage from 2 Corinthians 3:18 teaches us that contemplation has the effect of transforming us into the image of Christ.
(3) Seek the face of God (Psalm 27:8)
Moses stayed on the mountain for seven days before God spoke to him (Exodus 24:16). Yes, the face of God is sought, and God lets Himself be found if you seek Him with all your heart. Seeking the face of God means staying in the presence of God for as long as it takes until you see His face. This can be instantaneous or take several days. Those who constantly radiate Divine Joy are seekers of the face of God.
(4) Come regularly with an unveiled face before His face
Moses’ face shone for the first time when he descended from the mountain where he received the Ten Commandments. After that, the radiance remained because Moses regularly spoke with God with an unveiled face . Exodus 34:34-35.
An unveiled face means coming before God with sincerity and truth, without hiding anything. The Bible says that by praying in this way, we are changed into the image of Christ (2 Corinthians 3:18). Regularly have times before the face of God where you are deep and sincere; you will radiate with joy.
To meditate: Exodus 34:29-35; 2 Corinthians 3:7-18
This text is an excerpt from the book “The Mystery of Divine JOY – In his image to dominate, Devotions 2, April 2023” written by Mohammed SANOGO.