Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”
- Nehemiah 8:10
Growing up, I was pretty much a happy child. Even now, people who meet me tend to notice that joy exudes out of my soul when I am happy. That energy and enthusiasm lift others, but can also sometimes solicit suspicion. After all, how could someone be so happy? Sensing the hesitation in others, I began to doubt how my joy was being perceived. I started to worry if others would take me seriously, or if my happiness appears over the top or disingenuous.
This is especially difficult when practicing my faith. Already, I am mindful to be respectful and practice restraint, knowing that Christianity as a religion can appear to others as imposing or offensive. I want to live my faith privately and with intimacy, or so I thought. The truth is, perhaps I am timid and fearful as to how my faith, and especially the joy in my faith, would affect others.
Yet, this is exactly what we are called to do. By allowing others to see the joy in our faith, we become testimony in the most authentic ways. Instead of telling others of our faith, others around us experience the positivity and strength that the Holy Spirit gives. By acknowledging this, I am less concerned about how I am perceived, and instead live, eat, drink, exercise, and work with the full experience of the joy of being a follower of Christ. Others who see this cannot help but be impacted positively by it.
The joy of the Lord is our strength. Our light is not meant to be hidden, but is a blessing to others, if we dare to show it.
Reflection: How does the joy of the Lord give you life and strength?
This week's theme on Christian Calm Radio is joy, which we will study further in our weekly blog entitled, "Joy of the Lord". Praise and celebrate the incredible joy God instills in our lives by singing along to worship music on our Christian Calm Radio channels to help you with your journey in your faith.