The verse “The joy of the Lord is my strength” is a reminder to me when I am in a spiritual battle. In a conversation with a friend, he shared how the enemy is trying to discourage him in his spiritual walk. We reflected on the fact the enemy often tries to discourage people in their walk with Christ by taking away their joy.
Our enemy knows the power and significance of the joy of the Lord and will do whatever he can to take that away. The good news is the strength found in the joy of the Lord is something we can pray for. As we look to God instead of our circumstances our joy returns. Take a moment to list all the things that the Lord has done, is doing, and will do in the future. This will give you joy.
Nehemiah Reminded the People of the Joy of the Lord
We all grow weary and can become discouraged at times. Perhaps you are discouraged now. The path that we are on can leave us feeling overwhelmed and longing for more in life. We sometimes feel our sinful actions have alienated us from the Lord. In Nehemiah 8:10, Ezra, the Old Testament priest encourages the people to stop grieving over their sins and let the joy of the Lord be their strength.
When we are weak the Lord is strong! Ezra and Nehemiah encouraged the people to celebrate what God had done. We, too, need to do the same. God’s joy can start a fire deep inside our soul to strengthen us along our spiritual journey.
The good news is the joy of the Lord does not depend on our circumstances, but who we are in God’s sight. We are His children and the sheep of His pasture. We are so valuable that He gave His life for us upon the cross at Calvary. Ephesians 2:10For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.  You may not feel like a masterpiece, but you are!
The Joy of the Lord Restored
The joy of the Lord is found in the process of restoration. When the Lord convicts us of sin our first reaction is guilt and shame. We ask ourselves, “Why did I do that?” Once the people really understood God’s word they wept. God’s word opens our eyes to our sin.
But remember Nehemiah was quick to remind them of who the Lord is. We also need to remember who the Lord is. Psalm 103:8The Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.  Take the Lord’s hand and let Him lift you up and fill you with unspeakable joy!
To hear how the joy of the Lord is my strength, listen here: