The joy of the Lord is your strength. – Nehemiah 8:10
For a time after one of my children was born, I was terribly sick. My condition was so poor that I needed someone to
take care of me, and I spent a lot of time in bed. My niece came to visit me for a short time, and she said she was surprised by my demeanor. I had
a terrible headache and was very weak, and she could not get over how joyful I was in spite of the pain. I knew it was only the Lord who could give
a person joy in that situation, and I am sure she realized it too.
Looking back, the circumstances were far from ideal, but I was so comforted by the fact that the Lord was with me throughout the ordeal. I could just feel
Him near me. He had placed His joy in my heart when He saved me, and when times became really rough, He did not desert me. As the focus verse states,
His joy was my strength. Many people were praying for me to recover, and God answered their prayers.
Do you have the joy of the Lord in your heart? It starts at salvation when God rolls away the burden of sin, and we keep that joy alive by walking with
Him daily. It is remarkable how much more smoothly things go when we spend time with the Lord each morning and stay in touch with Him throughout our
day. That communion with our Savior helps us keep our focus on Him and on things eternal. It causes us to remember all the reasons that we have to
rejoice—His abundant love for us, His providential care, the home He has prepared for us in Heaven, and much more. With these promises in our
hearts, no trial we experience could steal away our joy. In fact, His joy is what will give us strength to overcome any trial!
God has promised to give us joy that is not dependent on circumstances. If your joy seems to be lacking, spend some time with Him and remember the many
reasons you have to rejoice. He will give you joy and be your strength today.