"...Do not sorrow, for the joy of the Lord is your strength". Nehemiah 8:10b
I wonder sometimes how we can have joy in the midst of sorrow. Have you wondered the same thing? Questions abound when illness, terrorism, riots, emotional turmoil, and many other turmoils come. Where is the joy? And how do we get it? Our joy comes only from Jesus, and His joy gives us strength. When we are in the middle of turmoil, it can seem like joy is a million miles away. The truth is, we become so consumed with our problem that we focus on it and we become a million miles away from Jesus. Jesus is always with us. When we focus on our problem, we are the ones that leave Him, and our joy is gone.
Life happens. Earthquakes devastate. Planes crash. Children die of cancer. Suicides soar. But God. Two most powerful words in the Bible. But God can bring joy in the midst of all the chaos. How? He sent His Son Jesus to die on the Cross of Calvary, for a sinful and dying world, so that it may have eternal life...and...joy even when trouble strikes. Having Jesus in your life doesn't mean there won't be trouble, but trusting and relying on Him, gives you hope. Our life on earth is temporary. We are getting ready for eternity. Earth is our training ground for what is yet to come.
"These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world". John 16:33. With all that goes on in this lost and dying world, we can find joy in Christ, and with that, His strength. And as it says in John 16, we can also have peace. In Philippians, Paul says, don't worry. Friends, God's got this! We just have to trust. I have found myself wondering why all these things happen. But God is always reassuring me of His joy and peace when I cry out, "Help"! to Him.
"And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus". Philippians 4:7
His peace, as well as His joy is beyond what we can understand. We cannot know God's plan, but He has it in place for us. So, do not sorrow, His joy is your strength. Let Him give it to you.
In peace and joy,