THE JOY OF THE LORD IS OUR STRENGTH!
Nehemiah writes that in chapter 8, verse 10. Nehemiah was called by God to lead a group back to Jerusalem from Babylon. He was supposed to repair the wall around the city, but that lead to a lot of problems. He was called to be a watchman as well as a worker.
I attended a prayer meeting some days ago. I live in Sweden and we usually pray for Sweden and the things going on in this country. The general morality of Sweden is low and it has been a total chaos among the political parties during the last months. Many Christians are praying a lot, but many are sleeping. It is so easy to focus on the negative things and everything that do not function. Many of us in the group have been talking and praying about all the negative things, but the Lord wanted to take us out of the vale of tears. He wanted us to stop groaning. He wanted us to come to a higher level and turn our eyes on Him. He reminded us of the fact that the devil wanted to steal our strength, our joy. This happens almost every day. Today an automobile engineering discovered a couple of serious faults on my car. I had not expected this and it will cost quite a lot of money and take some time. Should I groan and become sorry and allow that to ruin my day or should I thank God that I live in a country where it can be repaired? Even a car needs to change certain parts and it is not a catastrophe. We need to make a choice daily. Should my mood be governed by circumstances or by The Holy Spirit?
I would rather be joyful than in a bad mood.
I do not know you, but this doesn’t come automatically. God has given us a free will and I can choose the truth and the positive even in difficult situations. I remember when my sister’s husband died. I showed her love and sympathy, but I said to her: “You must decide to live now in spite of the sorrow.” She chose life and when she many years later celebrated her 80 years birthday, she said that she celebrated life in spite of being quite sick at the time. Aren’t we allowed to mourn? Yes, it is natural to miss the presence of a loved one and we must be real and say that I am sorry, but we should not build a nest in the ditch of sorrow. Some people do not come out of it. We too often hear that when one partner dies, the other dies a very short time after his or her partner. Maybe they haven’t chosen life.
I have earlier asked where our focus is? If we only are seeing negative things, we are giving the devil too much attention. He will get satisfied, but we are miserable. We are losing our joy and our strength. Turn your eyes on Jesus, what we have in Him and what He has promised us. I assure you that you will become thankful and happy then. I do not believe that we should be like an ostrich, digging his head in the sand. Too many Christians want to be spiritually blind. We are supposed to pray and fight the enemy, but we must do it in God’s power and we must know that we are over and not under. We are the head and not the tail. We should always start by being with the Lord before we do anything else. We read in John 3:29 that the friend of the bridegroom rejoices greatly when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. Are we happy when we hear His voice? Do you spend time with Jesus because you feel you must? If you do, you have the wrong picture of God and Jesus. You might not see the joy of the Lord as your strength then. You might even think that it is boring to be a Christian. You might think that He will deny you all the things that you like and enjoy. What a false picture of God!
In Matthew 6 it says that God takes care of our cloths and what we are supposed to eat. He knows our needs before we even mention them. We read in Philippians 4:19 that God will supply all our need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Does the Bible lye or does it speak the truth? But why does it take so long before I get the answers? Maybe I do not have faith, maybe I talk myself out of the answer. I must be sure that I pray according to His will. We also know that there are a lot of demonic resistance, trying to stop the answers.
The Bridegroom loves us and wants to spend time with us. I once again ask you: Do you love Him? When you are getting married, you talk a lot about your partner to be. You talk nicely about her or him and you are longing for the wedding and longing to share your life with the one you love. Are we longing for the Bridegroom and the wedding? If we do, we should be happy and positive about the future.
Do I need to think about God in order to experience the joy of the Lord? You will not experience true joy by sinning. If you choose to be unfaithful or getting drunk, that is not the joy that will give you strength. I do believe that we can be happy about nature, good music, interesting talks with others, good food at a nice restaurant etc. We must avoid becoming religious, thinking that everything is sinful. The Lord wants us to look for good things that we can thank Him for. I quite often hear testimonies from people experiencing small miracles during every-day life. It might be so simple as buying something they have wanted for very little money, something that was too expensive before.
BE JOYFUL FOR SMALL AND BIG MIRACLES DURING EVERY-DAY LIFE!