Written by Michelle Gill from the November 2015 edition of the Heart to Heart Newsletter
Joy is one thing that I do not see much of, even in those who know Jesus. I think about it alot, wondering why joy is missing. I don't know if there is one answer but I know the One Who is Joy. The joy of the Lord is my strength. I am not sure I ever understood the meaning before, as I do now. If I diagram the sentence out...
Joy is what? Strength
Whose joy? The Lord's
Whose strength? Mine
Today I opened the outside door in what used to be my living room, the cool rainy breeze struck my face and I remembered when, in the dead of winter, I had to keep that door cracked because I could not breath. I could physically breath but I felt like I couldn't after a tragedy. I kept a window or door cracked for a year. It was during this period I understood.
"I have heard You by the hearing of the ear,
But now my eye sees You." Job 42:5
"In His presence is fullness of joy," said David. I was forced into His presence. I'm not sure I would have made the same choices had I not had a daughter. I chose His presence because I felt I had no other choice. First His peace would come and cover me like a fleece blanket. Then He would lay down His joy inside me. It made no natural sense. It's hard to understand or explain. I felt an excitement for my life even though my circumstances told me that my life was over. I felt a strong security even though all that was secure, even what I thought of God, was pulled out from under me. I would sit and wait for His Spirit at times when another day seemed impossible.
He is Spirit and we worship Him in Spirit. You don't know where the wind comes from or which way it blows but You know when it's blowing.
He did not make me strong. He gives me His joy which gives me strength. I can now testify of Him and His joy that is able to hold you through anything. He is able to cause you to laugh when you forgot how. You are His and a testimony of Him. I testify of His desire for rebirth in whatever has been lost in your life. I have not only heard but now my eye has seen.
In everyday life when hormones are unbalanced and you just wake up out of sorts, His presence is still able to take over. When you are discouraged that a promise seems to never come for you, wait, listen to His voice and allow Him to fill you with His hope. Whatever is missing for you, for me it was joy, allow His to rest in you. The living wind is real that flows always, wake or sleep, good times or bad, in peace or turmoil. Feel the breeze? Your face, your life shows others Who He is, "in Him we live and move and have our being." (Acts 17:28, Eph. 1:23)
I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.
You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Psalm 16: 7-11