Circumstance and life in general can be a joy thief. What do you do when you uncover hidden bitterness, anger, or resentment in your heart? Allowing it to fester and germinate; tendrils of twisted negativity taking root, coloring our thoughts and deeds as they invade, destroy, and eventually kill our joy and the very strength God has given us as sustenance.
Hard providence is often accompanied by sharp pain and heavy burdens. How we respond to the waiting is our heart’s choice. Patiently waiting on the Lord, grounding ourselves in faith, accepting we are where we need to be; must be, allows our story to unfold the way God intends. We need to get out of our own way and allow His way to light our path and condition our heart.
“…for the joy of the LORD is your strength” Nehemiah 8:10
Charles Spurgeon described the joy of the Lord as, “…a joy of divine origin…a source of strength to all who partake…” This joy springs supernaturally from God Himself radiating outward to us as we contemplate all He is, has done, will be.
“All these attributes of my God are mine: his power, my protection; his wisdom, my guidance; his faithfulness, my foundation; his grace, my salvation” (Charles Spurgeon)
This delight in His character, His salvation, His abundant grace, promises, and providence stems from a heart tuned to the Lord — filled with HIs very presence; the indwelling Holy Spirit. Joy is our reaction to abiding in Christ, our expression of fellowship with our Savior.
It is this joy — the joy of the Lord — that strengthens; bubbling forth when we fix our eyes on the Gospel — on Jesus, the author of our faith, the coming glory, who is seated now at the right hand of God. It is our girding and our underpinning, our sunlight and our hope, the fuel that fires our determination to finish the race.
Seek the Lord through His Word, fix your mind on Him, draw close to His heart and allow His joy, the joy of salvation found in Christ, to strengthen.
The following article by Jon Bloom explores the necessity for “grit” or the stamina to continue pursuing the goal to the end:
We Have Need of Grit
So life is hard — harder than we ever expected. Well, Jesus told us it would be hard (Matthew 7:14; John 16:33), and our gritty forebears all found it harder than they expected too, so we are in good company. Like the Bible says, we have need of grit:
“For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God you may receive what is promised” (Hebrews 10:36).
The reason we have need of grit is…
Please continue reading here: True Grit | Desiring God