Turning the Key

I am intrigued with something Deborah Marie wrote on her blog, Great is God’s Faithfulness. The title of the post was, The Key to Life, and it was all about the choice set before God’s people in Deuteronomy 30:19-20.

Moses challenged them to love, obey and commit totally to God–to choose life over death and blessings over curses. This choice would be the key to life, but God would not make it for them.

“OK,” I thought. “I have the master key to life, but it’s useless until I stick it into a lock and turn it. What motivates me to do that?”

I found the answer in another excellent devotional. Glenn Packiam, writing in Our Daily Bread, shared an article called, Costly Joy. The scripture he spotlighted was Christ’s parable of the hidden treasure.

“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field.” — (Matthew 13:44)

The author then connects the dots to reveal the secret of unswerving motivation:

“Joy drives change–not guilt or duty.”

Glenn Packiam

BINGO! The Joy of the Lord inspires us to choose and use the key to life.

There’s a great example of this in action in Nehemiah chapter 8. The wall around Jerusalem had just been completed, and all the people came together to worship God. These folks hadn’t been to church or heard the Word in a long time. So when the scribe Ezra read from the Law of Moses, the congregation fell under conviction and began to weep. But Nehemiah said, “Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10

According to the book of Hebrews, it was this same kind of joy that gave Jesus the strength to endure the cross (Hebrews 12:2).

It may have been Friday night, but the Lord knew Sunday morning was coming!

You and I have read the book: God wins.

And winners go out in joy and are led forth in peace (Isaiah 55:12).

“Joy is the reason; surrender is the response. The treasure of knowing Jesus is the reward.”

Glenn Packiam

Whose Joy?

This joy that I have

the world can’t take it away

It belongs to God.

Photo by Jaye Haych on Unsplash

This post was originally published on December 30, 2020



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28 responses to “Turning the Key”

  1. God Still Speaks Avatar

    And this is why I love you brother!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you. No one has ever called something I wrote a “Jack pot” before. Crack pot, maybe. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  3. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Truth! His mission from God drove Jesus to complete His life’s goal—the redemption of mankind. And now we get to be His ambassadors!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. jesusluvsall Avatar

    part of the joy set before Jesus was knowing that his creation- us- would be able to be forgiven and have eternal life with him

    Liked by 1 person

  5. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you. I’ve with you about Ezra and Nehemiah. God did a mighty work amongst His discouraged people. And He’s still in the people business! God Bless.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Gary Fultz Avatar

    Good point. I just spent an hour on the skidsteer plowing out 2 of my neighbors propane tanks. Making trails for the gas truck. Its little things like that seem to occupy my time.
    So weighing the cost of another project. I wont turn the key unless God gives peace and turns the road sign to proceed slowly

    Liked by 1 person

  7. God Still Speaks Avatar

    BINGO! You just posted the jackpot sir!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Amen. It’s wonderful that God doesn’t motivate through coercion. He draws us back to Himself with love, joy, peace, patience, and self-control—the fruit of the Holy Spirit. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. davidsdailydose Avatar

    You’re welcome, Simply B. Thank you for stopping by. God Bless!


  10. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I hear you, Gary, but you seem to stay pretty busy doing good things. Maybes are still better than “if onlys,” which carry a different kind of regret.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Gary Fultz Avatar

    Your post is timely David. I have a “Project box” (I’ll call it) in front of me. I could turn the key, unlock and do it. I could put it away on the shelf and just get more fishing in. My choice. Maybe someday (if I turn the key), I will write about it. I think I have too many maybe’s in my life.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. SimplyB Avatar

    Good, good stuff, David! I’m inspired to choose the joy of the Lord today and use that key to life! Thanks for your always encouraging posts!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. An Audience of One Avatar
    An Audience of One

    What a beautiful post, packed full of goodness! Ezra and Nehemiah always get me in the gut. Just imagining the emotions felt. Also, I want to go back and read the other posts/devotionals you have linked when I have a chance, but for now, thank you for sharing this and bringing it all together for us! It was a blessing!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Don't Lose Hope Avatar

    What is more powerful and life-giving than the joy of the Lord (or, perhaps, the peace of Christ)? You are right: guilt and shame are terrible motivators. Peace and joy are powerful motivators.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Bridget A. Thomas Avatar

    Such a good point! And I believe you are right!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. davidsdailydose Avatar

    It’s a stressful time of year. No doubt. Perhaps the enemies of God want it this way—to distract from the miracle of Christ’s incarnation. But they can’t undo what God did—from the manger to the cross. But I’m starting to preach. ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

  17. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I’m grateful for your summary, Dawn. I hadn’t connected the dots in this way. This reminds me of passage in Micah which says to love mercy, do justice, and walk humbly with our God. His richest blessings to you!

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Bridget A. Thomas Avatar

    Oh wow, thank you for telling me that. I am so glad the extra set went to a friend who needed encouragement. And I am honored to know you are enjoying the book as well! Thanks, David! And thank you for this post. There has been a lot of stress in my life recently, and I need to hold tightly to the Joy of the Lord! Have a blessed weekend!

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Dawn Avatar

    Love God, obey God, and commit to God; this is a perfect takeaway for us today. Thanks David.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Thank you, Bridget. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I am currently on day four of your wonderful book, “Every Day is a Gift.” I am grateful for your kindness in sending me a copy. I gave the extra copy you sent to a coworker who lost both of her parents last year. Planting seeds, that’s what you’re doing, sister!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Bridget A. Thomas Avatar

    Thank you. I needed this. God bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  22. davidsdailydose Avatar

    It’s wonderful to see the parallel between God’s goodness and holy joy. Thank you for pointing this out, brother G. W. Your wisdom and unique wit are much appreciated. God Bless!

    Liked by 2 people

  23. G.W. Avatar

    Thank you, David. This is close to my heart. As Apostle Paul said in Ro. 2:4: “Don’t you know it’s God’s goodness that leads you to repentance?” God’s joy and goodness – two peas of the same Pod.
    God bless, brother.

    Liked by 2 people

  24. davidsdailydose Avatar

    I appreciate your thoughtful and sincere response, brother! In preparing to write something for the fourth Sunday of Advent, I rediscovered this post from two years ago. It said what was on my heart better than anything brand new. I treasure our friendship and kinship in the Lord. I shall see you soon for a blogger video chat. God’s best to the Kearns clan. 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿

    Liked by 1 person

  25. davidsdailydose Avatar

    Me too, Kenneth. The parables of Jesus are strikingly simple, yet profound in their application. I enjoy your poetry. Thank you for stopping by today. Blessings!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Kenneth Daniels Avatar

    Matthew13:44 I love this quote.

    Liked by 1 person

  27. Alan Kearns Avatar

    Thank you for this lovely large slice of Joy David! When you quoted Nehemiah 8:10 you had my undivided attention…it is a verse dear to my heart. All glory to God our Father that we have been sanctified with the Master’s Key to Eternity. May you and yours be richly blessed in Him today.

    Liked by 2 people

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