‘The LORD reigns, let the earth be glad;’ Psalm 97.1
This verse states so simply and beautifully that the earth has good cause for rejoicing because God is king over all. We might expect the king’s subjects or those who follow him to express joy, but in this verse the call to rejoice is to absolutely everyone – the whole earth.
The reason why everyone can find joy in God’s kingship is that his kingdom is based on love, and not on his domination. He is a king to whom everyone can come, whatever their background or whatever they have done, without fear of condemnation or retribution. The sad fact is that although many of us may have come to God like this in the first place, somehow it is so easy to lose sight of it as we go through life. Whereas once upon a time we freely accepted his grace, now we often forget it; or perhaps we once came to him with freedom and joy but now feel that we feel we have to ‘earn our keep’ with him, or that we have exhausted all of his grace to us.
Yet God does not change. The way we came to him and experienced his love at the beginning is the way that we can (and should) come to him every day - aware of his unfailing goodness and grace towards us. Spend a little time now reflecting on the words from today’s verse, and then try to let them linger on in your mind throughout the day: ‘The LORD reigns, let the earth be glad’.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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