Serve the LORD with fear and rejoice with trembling.Psalm 2:11
Have you ever really read this verse. Wow! Rejoice with trembling! Often, rejoicing and trembling are at the opposite extremes of the spectrum of our lives. Rejoicing deals with good news that will improve our quality of life. Trembling is often associated with the fear of something terrible or unpleasant happening in our lives. David is describing something that is totally different from any blessing or tragedy that can happen in our natural experience of life. What he is describing is spiritual by nature, rejoicing and trembling happen simultaneously when one encounters the glorious presence of the Lord. In His presence is fullness of overflowing joy; also, there is a terrifying fear because of His greatness and holiness. It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the Living God. Martin Luther had tasted this apparent contradiction in his God encounters. Check him out.
“So we should fear God in a way that doesn’t entirely exclude joy. It should be a genuine joy—a joy that can’t be kept bottled up in our hearts. When we truly believe that we have been reconciled to God because of Christ, we will have a smile on our face, a twinkle in our eyes, and a song of praise on our lips. The Holy Spirit tells us to serve our heavenly King with inward and outward joy, combined with reverence. If we don’t, we’ll become overconfident. We’ll start acting like animals and sink into lustful human pleasures. If we make sure we don’t become overconfident, then God won’t be offended by our happiness. In fact, he’s offended by sadness and demands joy. That’s why people who were in mourning were not allowed to bring God sacrifices, and why the offerings in Malachi were unacceptable to God (Malachi 2:13). We have to mix joy with fear and mix fear with hope.This psalm warns us not to become either proud or despondent. Falling into despair is as offensive to God as being overconfident. God doesn’t want us to be down in the dumps or high up in the clouds. He wants us to be somewhere in the middle.”
Rejoicing with trembling is not something you can fake. It is the immediate response of being touched by God. Have you been touched by God? If and when that happens you will know. How will you know. Rejoicing and trembling will become a way of life.