“For the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10b
Nehemiah had faced opposition. Yet, he completed the project he was working on. Besides, he advised the people to have joy. So, how do you have joy while going through adversity? As I got ready to write this piece about joy, I felt angry because something unpleasant just happened in my life. There was no joy.
So, I asked myself, how can I share about joy when at that moment I just wasn’t feeling the strength derived from joy?
So, I got this verse: So rejoice in the Lord and be glad, all you who obey him! Shout for joy, all you whose hearts are pure (Psalm 32:11b). I realized that the undesirable thing I went through tested my level of joy.
I searched my heart as I was pondering about this. ‘Is my heart pure?’ An incident hurt me. And therefore, I was angry. Whether I was right or wrong, my heart needed to be pure. So, I confessed that anger and let it go, inviting the Spirit to fill me once again.
Suddenly I felt that joy was restored. And I felt strong again.
So, if you don’t have joy right now, you can have it once more. Joy doesn’t come from happiness. It’s from our spirit. Look into your heart. Can you find anything impure? Anything robbing you of God-given joy, a fruit of the Spirit?
If impurity hides in the corner or your heart or mine, it can rob us of joy. So, let go of anger, unforgiveness or any other impure attitude. Let go of any impurity from your heart. Invite the Spirit to direct your whole life. And enjoy the joy that allows you to tap into strength. And enjoy life.
Father God, thank you for the provision of joy. Even if difficulties, suffering and pain, I trust in you to help me live a life full of joy, in Jesus ‘name.
Throughout this day pay attention to moments when you lose your joy. Be quick to confess any sin that may have occurred. Recover. Live with joy.
By Fab Batsakis
Used by Permission
• Joy out of Sorrow – Norma Becker’s story
• Living in God’s Joy and Peace – Prayer for Inner Peace
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