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  • Writer's pictureAndrea Jones

The Joy of the Lord is my Strength

Harvest 2023 on the Farm in NE
The Joy

Happiness comes and goes. Sadness comes and goes. Anger comes and goes. Anxiousness comes and goes. Fear comes and goes. But the joy of the Lord remains in my heart. Reigns in my heart.

“Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” -Nehemiah 8:10

Name the emotion. It comes and goes, but joy remains when we cling to Jesus. It might come as a high or a low, but as we trust in the Lord, we don’t stay or get stuck in those emotions forever. Emotions are good. They help to remind us we are real. We really have emotions. We are human. Jesus had emotions. He was human. He embraced them. He allowed God to use them to guide him and lead him. Something else I notice about Jesus’ reaction to his feelings is that he took them to the Lord. He went away with the Lord. He took time in quiet to process and pray and talk to God about how he was feeling.

Instead of ignoring, stuffing them down, feeling embarrassed by them or opposite, only listening to his emotions, Jesus took them to his Father and allowed him to work them out. I want to be like, look more like Jesus by recognizing my feelings and then seeking the Lord. Praying and asking others to pray with me while God uses them in my life to help me relate more to others and most importantly to help me depend more on him. Being okay being uncomfortable as God reveals himself and his purpose of my emotions to me.

I don’t know about you, but through experiencing deep emotions, it draws me closer to God, my Father and his son, Jesus Christ. I experience a big ol’ spiritual hug. The best ever! Sometimes it comes from God’s word, in prayer, from someone else or while sitting in his presence.

The other beautiful piece to this process of allowing God to do his work in our hearts, in sharing with others, is we get to witness, see and hear transformation in each other. As we enter into life with Christ together, we are blessed to get to see what the Lord is, will and has done in our brother and sisters’ lives. Beauty only God can create. He gets all the glory!

I am so in awe of how the Lord works! I wrote the paragraphs above about a month and a half ago not knowing that the Lord would be doing this work in my life and heart in the weeks to come. I have been walking through a beautiful season of getting to know a wonderful God-fearing man. What I didn't realize is how much dependence on the Lord I would need to help me let him in. I have been experiencing deep emotions all while experiencing the joy of the Lord through tears, frustration, grief, laughter, sadness, and anxiousness. I am different. God is changing me. He is making me look more and more like Jesus. It is hard work friends, but it is 100%, no 1000% worth it! I wouldn't change anything. My love for the Lord has grown leaps and bounds in this season. I have drawn nearer to my Heavenly Father all while learning how to let someone in. After all these years of praying and waiting for a wonderful man to come into my life, I am being pursued. He is a kind, gentle, patient, caring brother in Christ who loves the Lord with all of his heart, well maybe 87% of his heart, so therefore, I am being loved by the Lord through him. It is a precious gift. He is a precious gift.

Isn’t it so beautiful how God gives us opportunities to shape us, mold us and change us allowing for the joy of the Lord to truly be our strength? What a good good Father we have. His work not ours.

Have you experienced the joy of the Lord as your strength? I would love to hear how God has worked or how he is working in your life and heart. And if you haven’t, I would also love to come alongside you and help you understand what I’m even talking about. If my writing is a foreign language to you, that is ok. It was for me once too. Reach out, let’s talk.

~Blessings my friends

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