For the joy of the LORD is your strength
“I choose Joy”
How easy is it to hold on to joy, when a wave of sadness floods your mind?
A misplaced item, the wrong choice of words, a scornful look, the playing out of injustice, a subtle descending of sadness – covering the heart. But the day is not spent.
See, the Son still shines, even in the thickest night, look up and see, the Son still shines.
His smile radiates over us. Beloved of Christ, hear the voice of the Living God, serenading your soul. His love for you, colours each day. Even in the silence, listen, for your inhale and exhale are only echoes of His profession of love to you.
If ever again you notice that wave beginning to descend, or you feel the heaviness of it covering your heart, remember that you are the apple of God’s eye. He sustains the universe for your benefit. In jealousy Satan endeavors to steal a joy he has lost forever. He recognises the strength of a joyful Spirit and the might of a heart filled with gladness. A heart better able to love, to trust, and to forbear. But have you noticed how difficult it is to love yourself, to love your neighbour, when you are sorrowful? I am learning that deep sadness is like a filtered lense. When you put it on, it takes the colour, the beauty away from everything, and since only we are seeing the things around us through this filter, it makes us feel alone.
So I challenge you today to take off the shades, lift the blanket, shake off the waves and choose joy, because
the joy of the Lord is your strength
We can, to a very great extent control even our own emotions; but then, besides, we can do more than that. It may be quite true, that you cannot help feeling sorrowful in the presence of sorrowful thoughts, and glad in the presence of thoughts that naturally kindle gladness. But I will tell you what you can do or refrain from doing-you can either go and stand in the light, or you can go and stand in the shadow. You can either fix your attention upon, and make the predominant subject of your religious contemplations, a truth which shall make you glad and strong, or a half-truth, which shall make you sorrowful, and therefore weak. Your meditations may either centre mainly upon your own selves, your faults and failings, and the like; or they may centre mainly upon God and His love, Christ and His grace, the Holy Spirit and His communion.
You may either fill your soul with joyful thoughts, or though a true Christian, a real, devout, God-accepted believer, you may be so misapprehending the nature of the Gospel, and your relation to it, its promises and precepts, its duties and predictions, as that the prevalent tinge and cast of your religion shall be solemn and almost gloomy, and not lighted up and irradiated with the felt sense of God’s presence-with the strong, healthy consciousness that you are a forgiven and justified man, and that you are going to be a glorified one.
Today, you will be confronted with many choices, many opportunities to make decisions.
There is one decision that you can make, that will enable you to see, taste, hear and feel the goodness of God which already surrounds you. Choose Joy today.
Peace & Love
1 Samuel 8: In this chapter we see Israel asking Samuel to give them a king like the other nations of the earth. God reigned over Israel, God appointed prophets and ordained judges, but they wanted one man to have authority over them.
19 Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, “No, but we will have a king over us,
20 that we also may be like all the nations, and that our king may judge us and go out before us and fight our battles.”
At times God gives us ‘great’ and we, ourselves turn it down and look for ‘good enough’ – By the world’s standards and by our own standards. A similar occurrence in the garden of Eden, shows how Adam and Eve were given ‘great’, the entire garden of Eden and everything in it, except one tree, free of charge, but they settled for something that appeared ‘good’ for food.
Reflect over your life, and think:
what God-given greatness did I or am I substituting for my own ‘good enough’?
Peace and Love
I grew up with this film, and as a young Christian, I liked it because it made Christianity seem more virtuous than being of the world. It made it cool to be a Christian, because you’d get to date the cool guy at school at the end of the day. I thank God that my wisdom has since developed and when I revisited this film a few weeks ago, I found myself appreciating it for very different reasons. Life may not be as as easy as the movies, but this film tries just that little bit, to confront its audience with harsher realities of life. A line I really like, and identify with in this film is: “I do not need a reason to be angry with God”. Her faith was that strong, that she would have abstained from human companionship, for God’s love. I pray that, even in our struggles, challenges, the trials and tribulations – we will not be discouraged and we will not be angry with God and turn away from him amen in Jesus name.
It has been brought to my attention very recently, the story of Job in the bible, which I have yet to read, however, the scriptures I have come across, refer to his suffering, how God allows the devil to take everything away from Job but his life, even bring physical afflictions on him. He suffers a great many sufferings, but the story of Job teaches us that we should love God, no matter what, even in our suffering. That doesn’t mean we should continue to suffer, but we should know that the blood of Jesus Christ is sufficient in ending every single form of hardship, breaking every yoke, lifting every burden, destroying all evil and wickedness, loosing every stronghold. I only pray that our faith is established further, so we are able to use that which Christ was sacrificed for and be saved by his blood, amen in Jesus name.
Psalm 34:15 – 22
15 The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry.16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil, To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.17 The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles.18 The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart, And saves such as have a contrite spirit.19 Many are the afflictions of the righteous, But the Lord delivers him out of them all. 20 He guards all his bones; Not one of them is broken. 21 Evil shall slay the wicked, And those who hate the righteous shall be condemned. 22 The Lord redeems the soul of His servants, And none of those who trust in Him shall be condemned.
amen in Jesus name.