The Joy of God? (@dotsters)

“Go home and prepare a feast, holiday food and drink; and share it with those who don’t have anything: This day is holy to God. Don’t feel bad. The joy of God is your strength!” (Nehemiah 8:10 MSG)

So the verses just before this were where the people had heard the word of the Lord and had recognised how much wrong they had done and so they were weeping. They had hurt God, and all felt guilty before God. But the words above were spoken to them ‘Don’t feel bad, the joy of God is your strength’, such healing words, it’s OK, you have recognised how unworthy you are and you have said sorry through your weeping, but the ‘joy of God is your strength‘.

My first thought was how often do we recognise when we have hurt God and perhaps others and weep, because of causing that hurt. I frequently see on fb, twitter, the news, things that must make God despair at the thoughtlessness of people. I saw the film Noah and some of the things that were portrayed (although wrongly in many aspects) made me sit up and think about what we do in the name of ‘religion’. Don’t think I am one of the ‘holier than thou’ people, far from it!! I am so aware of my faults and failings that I often wonder how or why God would choose someone like me, but then that is the God I serve and worship. He loves me despite my failings because in them He can show his strength, my weakness and shame will become his power and glory. So I will rejoice in Him who has chosen to use me, because I have acknowledged my sinful nature and his joy shall be my strength.

The second thought was how often do I really show the joy of God in my life? Do I go round with an ‘oh poor me’ face, or a frown, or do people see something in me that, despite my circumstances, show that God is living in me and that He IS the one who is my shepherd and who is leading me in right paths (Psalm 23).image001 (1)

Life is not easy – believe me I know that, but God has brought me through this far and he will continue to lead and direct me as long as I keep reading the word of God and keep looking to the one who is THE word, Jesus Christ.

About dotsters

newly ordained as a priest and curate at Chester Cathedral, senior lecturer in Christian youth work, love singing, spending time with friends as long as i can have some space for me as well! most important people in my life, my family especially my 2 daughters. most important thing in my life - following Christ