Today's readings are Psalm 19.7-14, Leviticus 16.1-24, and Luke 10.1-22.
There are times when we feel really good about what we've done. We have followed the directions given to us. We've completed our task. Life is good. No doubt, on one level, when Aaron and his sons had completed the sacrifices on behalf of the people of Israel, when they were tired but knew they had worked for the people's forgiveness, they would go to wash up and feel very good about a good day's work. When Jesus sent out the seventy-two to minister in his name, they returned in victory, feeling very good about themselves.
What was Jesus' response to these disciples? Yes, they had done well, working according to his commands, doing what he told them to do. But their rejoicing should not come from the fact that they were able to do mighty works. The joy of the believers should come because of the greatest miracle of all, that their names are written in heaven.
Christians are partakers of an eternal heavenly reward. We are forgiven. This should overcome all the other reasons for rejoicing that we can ever concoct. Do we look earnestly to our Lord with thanksgiving and praise because he is greater than all the circumstances that drag us down, greater than the sin that besets us? Let us rejoice. Our names are written in heaven.