“I will sing of mercy and judgment: unto thee, O LORD, will I sing.”
We sing the song, “I sing because I’m happy, I sing because I’m free…” Singing is always a reflection of the heart. You show me what type of music you sing, and I can show you what type of heart you have. Singing the music of the LORD is always a reflection of a joyful heart. The psalmist says in the verse above, “I will sing…” He then concludes the same verse by saying, “…unto thee, O LORD, will I sing.” He is showing the joy he has in his heart for what God’s mercy and judgment had done for Him. In this psalm, God points out eight things you must protect if you are going to have a joyful heart.
First, you must protect your ways. Verse 2 talks about the “perfect way.” The way of life you choose always affect the joy in your heart. You can’t walk in the world’s way or in a selfish way and have a heart filled with joy. If you want a joyful heart, you must accept God’s way of salvation and right living to be joyful.
Second, you must protect your heart. Verse 2 continues to talk about the “perfect heart.” Your heart is the seat of your affections. Your heart is from whence you get your desires. Protect what you allow to influence your heart because your heart always affects your joy.
Third, you must protect your eyes. Verse 3 warns about not setting wicked things before your eyes. You can’t watch the wrong things and have a joyful heart. You can’t look at lustful pictures and violent-filled scenes and have a joyful heart at the same time. Your eyes are the portal to your heart, and what you allow yourself to see will affect the joy in your heart.
Fourth, you must protect your associations. You can’t spend time with people who turn aside and have a heart of joy at the same time. Your associations always affect your heart. You will have a heart of joy if you have the right associations.
Fifth, you must protect your tongue. You can talk bad about others and expect to have a peaceful life. What you say does affect your relationships. You can’t have joy-filled relationships and speak hurtful words at the same time.
Sixth, you must protect your spirit. You can’t expect to have a spirit on topside when you are watching and listening to the negative that the world puts out. Keeping your eyes on the faithfulness of the LORD and those who serve Him will protect your spirit, which will help you to have a joyful heart.
Seventh, you must protect your decisions. Bad decisions always take joy from your life. You can’t make bad decisions and expect not to suffer the sad consequences of those decisions. If you want to keep a joyful heart, you had better make spiritual decisions that result in joy.
Eighth, you must protect your altar. Verse 8 talks about destroying wickedness quickly. The best time to take care of sin is immediately. The longer you allow sin in your life, the deeper its roots grow, and the more it chokes out the joy in your heart. Joy comes from doing right, and getting rid of sin quickly is the only way to keeping the joy of the LORD in your heart. My friend, the joy of the LORD, which results in a singing heart, will come naturally when sin is not present in your life.