Do you know that God rejoices over you? It’s true! Every time one of His own (and we are ALL His own by creation) returns His love (commits their life to Jesus) God feels great joy:
“The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”
The angels party in heaven in receipt of you: “…there is joy in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” (Luke 15:10)
Pastor John Piper offered an explanation that really shows the relationship between God, Jesus and humans. Keep in mind that Jesus is our intercessor, our go between, and without accepting Him as our Lord and Savior, our prayers (to God) sort of go void:
“We must banish from our minds forever any thought that God admits us begrudgingly into his kingdom, as though Christ found a loophole in the law, did some fancy plea-bargaining, and squeaked us by the Judge. No way! God himself, the Judge, put Christ forward as our substitutionary sacrifice, and when we trust him, God welcomes us with bells on. He puts a ring on our finger, kills the fatted calf, throws a party, shouts a shout that shakes the ends of creation, and leads in the festal dance.” (http://www.desiringgod.org/sermons/the-lord-will-rejoice-over-you)
There is an account in the Bible, found in St. Luke, of a prodigal son (one whom has done wrong and gone astray) who comes home in the end, to the father he has wronged. The story can sometimes be misunderstood as an example purely of human love and forgiveness; but if you know Jesus and his stories, there is always a correlation to God, the Father. If you don’t know Jesus well enough to understand his parables, or stories, let’s just say all he relates to those around him, is in direct relationship to God. It is Jesus’ very essence, being the incarnation of God, which provokes this.
The point of my mentioning this story of the prodigal son (or daughter) is because in the end, after all the son has done wrong against the family, his father celebrates and rejoices in his homecoming. Mind you, the son came home with a repentant heart:
“I will arise and go to my father, and will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you, and I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Make me like one of your hired servants. And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him.
“And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry.”
This is how God, the Father, feels when we find our way back into His midst, with the desire for our lives and hearts to be free; of our wrongs to be forgiven. Even if we never actually left his midst, i.e. we have known Him our whole lives yet made a conscious decision to walk closer with Him, and recommit our lives to him, God rejoices over this! However, for those of us who were far from His voice for a period of time (or have never known Him) and we answer His call in our lives, I’d like to think the “party” is more grand.
Why? Because the wages of sin against us is great but His redemption, His saving grace and mercy, is greater still! It’s a victory that overcomes evil and darkness in our lives; one that leads us down a well-lit path to abundant life. It may not include a mansion on a hill during this lifetime but it will bring you something richer: unshakable joy, peace and the love of a God who adores you; a God who wants to love you like that father in the story, if you’ll only let him.
My own “homecoming” was one I was not only ready for, but asking for. When I look over things I had written, over several years leading up to the actual event, I was definitely being drawn back to and seeking Him. When He moved me into position, I was putty in His hands; a girl, desperately in need of her Abba Father! Submission never felt so sweet! Turning back wasn’t an option.
Soon enough, I felt the party in heaven rocking my entire being, and still do to this day! HE is the source of that never-ending stream of joy that flows through and out of me.
Our God…Oh, how he loves us! Believe this…our Father celebrates, rejoices, over us!