Friday, April 27, 2007

Choose Joy

Discovering the purpose God has for my life has made me a very busy person. It doesn’t seem like there are enough hours in the day to accomplish all I must do, and I run out of strength and energy. Overwhelmed, I cry out to God for help.

One day simple words on the radio changed my way of thinking. “If you are overwhelmed, you’re not trusting God.”

Could it be true? I thought I was trusting God. I have experienced His love for me and it is important for me to tell others how much He loves them. That’s why I teach Sunday school and help with children’s choir. That’s the reason I write articles and stories. Doing all this with a full time job and a family is a challenge and I wonder if my life purpose has turned to busyness.

When I interviewed a Christian author for a profile article, she said her favorite Bible verse was Nehemiah 8:10, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.”

I thought about Nehemiah, a spiritual leader as well as a national leader. When he became passionate about rebuilding the wall around the city of Jerusalem, he prayed. When he faced opposition, he prayed. When he organized the work and defense of the wall, he prayed. I wonder if he was ever overwhelmed. His encouragement came from trusting God and he could testify, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” That’s what I need.

So at the beginning of each day I pray that God would show me what is important. I pray for His peace to fill me, and I choose joy because it is my strength. My days can still get overwhelming, but before I get out of bed I say to God, “I choose joy!” Some days I say it over and over, and I discover like Nehemiah, it really is my strength. Besides choosing joy, I rely on God’s help, for I can do nothing without Him, but with His help, I can finish what He has given me to do.

God worked in Nehemiah and His people to rebuild the Jerusalem wall in 52 days, and He can do extraordinary things in me when I choose joy by trusting Him.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

eve8Sue, What a great reminder that "joy" is a choice. It is a freedom given to us by our Creator.

Some confuse joy with a right to be happy at any cost, but that choice leads to eventual unhappiness - brought on by the trap of sinful behaviour disguised at the beginning as "fun".

Thanks for the reminder to choose joy every morning!