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This exhortation was spoken during the testimony time at Resurrection Life of Jesus Church on March 15, 2009:

This is a meditation the Holy Spirit gave to me when we were singing the song, ďThe Joy of the Lord is My Strength.Ē The word came to me that we are to guard our joy, because if we donít have the joy of the Lord, we donít have the strength. What do we need strength for? We need it to resist temptation.

So what if youíre tempted to be afraid? Fear is really big under certain situations and at other times you think you donít have any fear. But things can happen to any of us and fear can come in. You need that strength to resist fear. And other times discouragement comes where you want to give up and throw in the towel. Whatís the use to fight? But the Lord wants you to be strong in the inner man.

So where are you going to get this strength? You get it from joy; the joy of the Lord is our strength! Itís a supernatural joy that is not happiness that comes with situations but an inner joy and peace that comes from the Holy Spirit. It is not the happiness that the world gives; they talk of joy and happiness but they have no idea about this kind of joy because it is different. It sustains you in sorrow when youíve lost a loved one and you are grieving, you still have an inner joy because you know that God is in control of everything.

And so the Holy Spirit was telling me really strongly for us to guard our joy and practice the joy of the Lord; nurture it so that you are always walking in joy of the Lord. Check yourself and make sure you have that joy.

Nehemiah 8:5-12

(5)  And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people; (for he was above all the people;) and when he opened it, all the people stood up:

(6)  And Ezra blessed the LORD, the great God. And all the people answered, Amen, Amen, with lifting up their hands: and they bowed their heads, and worshipped the LORD with their faces to the ground.

(7)  Also Jeshua, and Bani, and Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodijah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, and the Levites, caused the people to understand the law: and the people stood in their place.

(8)  So they read in the book in the law of God distinctly, and gave the sense, and caused them to understand the reading.

(9)  And Nehemiah, which is the Tirshatha, and Ezra the priest the scribe, and the Levites that taught the people, said unto all the people, This day is holy unto the LORD your God; mourn not, nor weep. For all the people wept, when they heard the words of the law.

(10)  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.

(11)  So the Levites stilled all the people, saying, Hold your peace, for the day is holy; neither be ye grieved.

(12)  And all the people went their way to eat, and to drink, and to send portions, and to make great mirth, because they had understood the words that were declared unto them.


Volume 12, 2009