Do not rejoice in this... but rejoice that your names are written in heaven. Luke 10:20
Think what makes you happy: a successful trouble-free ward round? A night off at last? A fascinating case of 'obscuritis unusualans'? A day when things go right, ie when no-one shouts at you? A good meal?
The seventy-two followers of Jesus described in Luke 10:17-20 had something to shout about, something to be happy about; they returned with joy, marvelling at the power Jesus had given them. We can picture them returning from their travels sharing with one another what they had been able to do. We can understand how they felt. By comparison the things that make us happy seem trivial. But look at Jesus' reply: 'Do not rejoice that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven'.
Jesus puts things into a different perspective. A successful day at work is good; power to control evil spirits may seem better, but how much more wonderful is the salvation that is ours through Christ Jesus! That really is something to shout about. It is something we can rejoice in even when the ward round is not trouble-free, when we have no night off, when we are clerking our twenty-fourth hernia of the day, and yes, even when the good is awful!
Thank you, Lord, that my name can be written in heaven
because of what you have done for me. Forgive me that
so often I see things from the world's perspective.
Help me to know more of the joy of your salvation.
Further reading: Ps 51:10-17. Tit 3:4-8a.