I meet a lot of people who have simply lost their joy.
I’m not talking about the normal changes in mood that we all experience from time to time. We all know that happiness is deeply connected to our circumstances, and that makes it hard for anyone to be happy ALL the time.
What I’m talking about is something deeper. It’s the root of deep and lasting joy that is the right of every child of God to enjoy. A joy that surpasses our circumstances and causes us to live with greater love, passion, and spark. The joy that gives us the energy we need to run the race of faith.
Certainly that kind of joy can be lost. David cries out to God in prayer: “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation…” (Psalm 51v12). As David repents of his broken-ness and sinfulness, he realises he has lost his joy. And like a desperate man, he wants it back.
Why is joy so important? Because it is the source of our strength “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8v10). I really believe that one of the devils strategies is simply to attack our joy; because if he can steal our joy, then he has stolen our strength. How does that happen? I think we shift our focus away from the source of joy (the Lord) and get bogged down in the difficulties of life. Whatever captures your attention, captures you. And too often our hearts and minds are captured by all the wrong things.
Let me encourage you to return to the source of joy today. Jesus. Thank him for his goodness, his grace, love and care. Ask him to turn your sorrow into joy. Let the idea of salvation capture your attention today. The gospel is good news! Let the joy of the Lord be your strength!