"The Joy of the Lord is Our Strength" . Amen to that. I am going to make this short today, but at least the "bad blogger" in me showed up. :) When I think of this verse, I am reminded of a complement someone once gave me.
I love to study God's word. Even though I battle with the time to (or time management), like everyone else. I've been told I'm a good Bible Study teacher. I don't see it. I feel it's more like me discovering stuff for myself and then going "hey, did you know ___________? I didn't!!" Apparently, that works.
Once I was at church, studying for a women's retreat I was leading on "joy". I had been there all day. It was a Wednesday and I was coming downstairs to join my church family for dinner. (That might be a Southern thing, but we like it.) I passed a friend in the stairwell. He said "Hey Kristy, you look.........." and he stopped, looked at me (okay...he starred) and took a dramatic pause. Alright, more like a long, uncomfortable pause. I was beginning to wonder what he was going to say. Did I look tired, sick, awful, beautiful, deadly, what? How did a look? And then he said with a smile..."Why, you look joyful!" (He seemed surprised.) Then he turned and left me there all by myself, in the stairwell of my church, pondering what a "joyful" person looked like. I'm still not sure I know.
I took it as a complement. Actually, it's one of my favorite complements ever! Psalm 16:11 says "you will fill me with JOY in your presence". Being in the presence of God can and does make one joyful. I had spent all day with God. I guess it showed in my face. (I envision Charlton Heston in the "10 Commandments" coming down from the mountain with his face all aglow...I know I can be a bit dramatic.)
And God's joy is our strength. Even for a "bad blogger" like me.