"When you have His joy in your heart, it doesn't necessarily mean your pain or hurt will be taken away. It means you'll be able to bear it." - Adrian Rogers
My pain and His joy can exist at the same time in my heart... and His joy is what carries me through the pain.
"Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: neither be ye sorry; for the joy of the LORD is your strength."- Nehemiah 8:10
The joy of the Lord is sometimes misconstrued to mean to having a continual, shallow laugh - dismissing or denying the reality of sorrow or pain - but it is much deeper than this.
When Jesus bore our sorrows and carried our griefs - when He was smitten of God and forsaken on our account - He was not glibly singing, "I have the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart... and I'm so happy, so very happy..." or "He fills my mouth with laughter - ha - ha - ha - ha - ha!" In contrast, He was in deep anguish in the midst of doing His Father's will. Doing His Father's will was His joy - His heart desire fulfilled.
"Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." -Hebrews 12:2
The joy of the Lord in my heart is fixed even through times of sadness. Joy embodies belief in God's sovereignty and hope in His promises. How else could we live out the following Scriptures?
Proverbs 31:25 - "Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come."
Philippians 4:4 - "Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice."
1 Thessalonians 5:16 - "Rejoice evermore."
1 Thessalonians 5:18 - "In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you."
Joy exhibits grace. By resting in the joy of the Lord, there is no need for struggling to maintain joy. It is quietly there in the heart while the world is whirling around us.
Joy in the Lord gives us strength because He is our strength. My life verse is Psalm 28:7.
The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him. - Psalm 28:7
This verse clearly connects [His joy and His strength] to [my joy and my song.] ❤
His joy in your heart will carry you through the sad and difficult days of this journey.