Have you ever watched a hurdle race in the Olympics? Contestants sprinting and jumping over fences to see who can get to the finish line first. Unlike a straight sprint, these have Obstacles that have to be overcome! I remember a while back I had such a bad, bad day for me, due to my muscle disease. Even trying to pray through a verse was so tough. That morning I awoke and 1 Peter 1:6 caught my mind, and in particular the words… “Greatly rejoice.”

The verse says, “In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,…” The word “Distressed” means, “grieved,” “heaviness,” or “tearfully sorrowful” and speaks of “mental anguish” not necessarily physical suffering. Peter makes it clear that suffering causes distress. And That described where I was at! “But God…” That morning as I said, 1 Peter 1:6 caught my attention and in particular, “GREATLY REJOICE.” It literally means to “JUMP MUCH, LEAP.” Indeed “LEAP FOR JOY!” “Greatly Rejoice” what a beautiful word picture,…”LEAPING OVER EVERY OBSTACLE!”- Just like the Olympian hurdling those fences, when he or she comes to it they don’t stop, they GO OVER THEM… for they have the knowledge, ability and will to. THEY LEAP OVER THEM HEADING TOWARDS THE FINISH LINE! So we too have “obstacles” in our lives of all kinds, …So what does He use to help us HURDLE these obstacles to keep running? TO LOOK AWAY TO HIM, to trust Him, His Word? The passage says “IN THIS” you greatly rejoice” What is the “IN THIS’ that gives us the reason to Jump for Joy and Leap Over Obstacles in our way? He recalls TRUTH…of what God has done for us and is doing and will do…

He gives reasons, facts, truth to Think on to stimulate them to Leap for Joy, to Greatly rejoice, delight in!! {Read 1 Peter 1:2-9}.

“PAST… Grounds For LEAPING FOR JOY OVER OBSTACLES ! –

  • CHOSEN BY GOD
  • SANCTIFIED BY THE SPIRIT
  • SPRINKLED WITH THE BLOOD

* A RECIPIENT OF GREAT MERCY

* A LIVING HOPE

  • A SECURED INHERITANCE
  • RESERVATION IN HEAVEN

SALVATION THAT IS KEPT BY THE POWER OF GOD…

“PRESENT… Grounds For Rejoicing” – Distress’s are for a short period…they have a time limit, they are temporal not permanent, the passage teaches. Take the long view… The testing of your faith IS producing…

“FUTURE… Grounds For GREATLY REJOICING – The Secured Inheritance and … God honoring you for your faith in the furnace f afflictions…at the Revelation of Jesus.

TRUTH Enlightens, Truth Elevates, Truth Empowers us as we think on it and Whose it is and we can by the strengthening of the Holy Spirit overcome our difficulties- not necessary delivered from- as these whom Peter wrote to were not but they had the ability to Hurdle them and not fall at them and be kept permantley down. Perhaps like a runner you have tripped up and fallen. Get up, and begin a fresh, thankful that one day these difficulties- all of them will pass and you will be with Him forever who removed the greatest hurdle of all, our sin, so we can be with Him.

THINK Often on His Word, applying it and keep Jumping for Joy- Because you can! Think n the reasons you have from this passage to “greatly rejoice!” Why is it so important you choose to rejoice? One reason is found in Philippians 3:3 where Paul tells the believers to rejoice for it is a “safeguard” to them. The word, “safeguard,” means to not trip up, stumble! It honors the LORD as you obey Him and expresses love to Him-{Read John 14:21}. it also is for your protection from despair and also to keep your morale up!

And in light of these Blessings through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ…. we are to “BLESS… SPEAK WELL OF…PRAISE” God who is now our Father- {1:3}… And we have reasons to Leap for Joy, and He imparts the power amidst distress, and stressful times TO LEAP OVER THE OBSTACLES we encounter as we remember His Word, promises, and “IN THIS YOU GREATLY REJOICE” as we recall TRUTH to our MIND and PRAISE Him for the REALITY of Who He is What He has done, is doing… and THINK ON TRUTH and CELEBRATE Him!

1 Peter 1:7 gives us the reason for these “various trials…”

“…SO THAT the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;”-{1 Peter 1:6-7}.

Note that the “proof,” the genuineness of your faith is revealed in your trials, suffering, to what end?” This is the means to the end which is God commending, honoring you for your faith in the furnace, that He applauds, commends and will Honor you for! How amazing is that! For faith pleases Him, and He honors the faith of those who live so!-{Read Hebrews 11:6}. He will reward you, for the display of genuine faith which you possess and the suffering as in the case of these suffering believers in 1 Peter. Not only is suffering a part of this life, it has a limitation and the end you have a reward from the LORD Jesus Christ. Rejoice, “Jump For Joy, ” because of what this passage reveals for you dear suffering one! “Jump for Joy!”

SEE THE “OBSTACLE,” NAME IT… PLACE TRUTH AGAINST IT AND REJOICE IN GOD– FOR THE PROMISES, PROVISION HE HAS GIVEN TO YOU NOT TO BE OVERCOME BY THE OBSTACLE BUT OVERCOME THE OBSTACLE be it to doubt, despair, complaining, fear, worry, with an attitude of confident faith in God,…BY CHOOSING TO GREATLY DELIGHT, REJOICE IN GOD and HIS WORD! It means also not to allow the “obstacle” to control your mood, attitudes! But develop, maintain an attitude of gratitude, a delight in Him who is Right and what He says is Right and who supplies us with the ability to respond Right!

It does not necessarily mean the circumstances change but it does mean you will not allow the circumstances to change you from delighting, blessing, speaking well, of, trusting God!

Leaping Over Obstacles with joy by THINKING on and APPLYING Truth. And His WORD TRANSFORMS us {Read Rom 12:2}. PRAISING HIM for His Provision and promises as seem in 1 Peter 1:2-7! Read the passage and Pause and PRAISE Him for each Provision mentioned for you!

It Takes Faith to SPEAK WELL…PRAISE Him when in the midst of a Fiery trial of great stress. It is easier and “natural” to say “when I get through this then I will praise Him…. but not now!” Just as it took FAITH for the people to look away to the Bronze serpent from the snakes, and the danger of death, so it takes faith to CHOOSE to PRAISE HIM SPECIFICALLY… TO SPEAK WELL OF HIM in the midst of stressful times! Peter lists several reasons why we can in verses 2-9. Go back read and no matter how you “feel,” CHOOSE to Speak well TO Him, Praise Him, Bless Him. “He who offers a sacrifice of praise Honors Me” -{1 Samuel 2:20}

“Therefore, let us offer through Jesus a continual sacrifice of praise to God, proclaiming our allegiance to His name.”-{Hebrews 13:5 NLT}

  • Obstacles show us our own weakness and our Need of the LORD. -{2 Cor 1:9}
  • Obstacles afford opportunities to Talk to God, LEAN on Him and Receive from Him all we need for the challenge! -{2 Cor 12:9}
  • Obstacles are Opportunity to see God meet us. -{2 Chronicles 20:12}
  • Obstacles are opportunities to share your faith. -{1 Peter 3:15}
  • Obstacles are to be expected but they need not overcome us! Because we have TRUTH and the truth shall set us free from false concepts, from being controlled by feelings, unbelief we too often choose to control us! We are already “free” in Christ, but it is a matter of living in that freedom!

So, begin to look at your God and blessings and CHOOSE To PRAISE, SPEAK WELL TO HIM for Who He is and what He has and is doing and will do for you. Recall the truth and reasons from 1 Peter 1:2-7 often and choose irrespective of how you feel, or the obstacle before you, to delight, rejoice, “Leap for Joy” in your heart because the LORD is Sovereign over every situation including the obstacle you face presently! He is, the Supplier for all of your needs, the Victor, who has gifted you His indwelling Spirit to enlighten, empower you, and His Word to guide and govern your choices to “Leap for joy,” because of Who you know and what you know and the ability you have to choose to OVERCOME the obstacle and not be OVERCOME by it. “Leap for Joy,” because of the greatness of God and the greatness of your salvation courtesy of Him! “Leap for Joy!”

Your Future is bright your future is Christ. These trials, distress’s though great are temporary. How do we know? His Word says so, and He cannot lie to us! Now we can leap for Joy in that can’t we! Temporary troubles and an Eternal God!

*These are Challenging Times But God Is CHAMPION over the times and He has giving us precious and magnificent promises to encourage us and power to enable us to LEAP OVER THE OBSTACLES that would cause us distress in our race to the finish line …. to be with HIM! – {Read 2 Peter 1:3-4; Phil 2:13}

Your Attitude determines your Altitude. And Feed Your Attitude, with His Word, will elevate your altitude!. Its a choice you make, not an emotion you wait upon, or a circumstance to change! You Choose Your ATTITUDE!

Keep Going, Keep Running your race of faith. Keep Jumping for Joy…LEAPING OVER OBSTACLES…Looking To Jesus by faith as He is revealed in His Word, Trusting His Word…Celebrating all you have… You’re running to Him!…The Finish Line is…. HIM and Home!

RUN AND JUMP FOR JOY!