Monday, 13 August 2012

The joy of the Lord is my strength

I thought I would write a new post today, and had a certain subject in mind.  As I sat down to type I thought 'Shall I write on that or shall I write on something else?', so I picked up one of the little booklets I have written over the years and opened it, thinking to share a personal testimony.  There in front of me was something I had written several years ago called  'The joy of the Lord is my strength.'  I have recently read a post on someone's blog and it mentioned the meaning of 'joy', and again on someone's blog this morning I noticed the word 'joy', so I thought that I would share that writing today.


What is 'joy'?

Joy to the natural mind is doing the
things that bring pleasure.  I get a
lot of pleasure out of nature, and taking
photographs.  I love animals and birds
and get tremendous pleasure from their presence in my daily life, and I get pleasure from painting, writing and many other things that I do.

  





Yes, we tend to use the
word 'joy' when we talk about the pleasures of this life, and there is nothing
wrong in that.




What of the meaning of 'joy' in God's eyes?

My dictionary tells me that 'joy' means 'excitement or stimulation of pleasurable feeling caused by the acquisition or expectation of good'.  As a christian I know that there is, in God's eyes, an established good and an established evil, and I must learn, through the Holy Spirit's teachings, to discern between the two.

Good and evil

Is it by choice or predestined, that we do good or evil? What is good, what is evil, where is the plumb line? Is my evil somebody else's good, is my good somebody else's evil? To whom somebody else's evil is good, then it is good. To whom somebody else's good is evil then it is evil. To establish a common good or a common evil there must be a plumb line. Without a plumb line there is no such thing as good or evil - only chaos.

Proverb ch.15 v.21 says that, 'Folly is joy to him that is destitute of wisdom: but a man of understanding walks uprightly',  so where do I find true joy that will not come from folly, and how do I tell the difference?  First of all, in order to experience fully the kind of joy that is mentioned in the Bible, the kind that Nehemiah spoke of as being a strength in Nehemiah ch.8 v.10,  I must have a knowledge of what walking uprightly is in God's eyes.  Just as Nehemiah had given understanding to the people of God concerning what was walking uprightly in God's eyes when the people were under the law, the Holy Spirit will give understanding of what is walking uprightly in God's eyes to we who are not under the law but who are under God's grace.  Otherwise we will be deceived, and have a substitute joy which will be derived from what is good in our own eyes, but maybe not in God's eyes.

In the book of Jeremiah ch.15 v16 Jeremiah says to God 'Thy words were found, and I ate them , and Thy words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by Thy name O Lord God of hosts.'
We see by this account that it is God's words that became a joy, but only after Jeremiah 'ate' them, so God's words acted upon (eaten) become an 'excitement or stimulation of pleasurable feeling caused by the acquisition or expectation of 'good'.  So the christian can be sure that as he or she seeks God's word in their lives, what God speaks to each individual will become a joy and the delight of the heart if that word is acted upon.

I can truly say that when God speaks to or instructs me from His word personally, though I may not always understand it or my carnal mind will advise against it, if I believe it and, when required, act upon it, it brings about good - a good which surpasses all that I could imagine.   In John ch.14 v.15,  Jesus says to those who believe in Him 'If you love me keep my commands .   And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Counselor, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; you know Him, for He dwells with you, and will be in you.'

It is always my choice whether I do what He asks or not, but how can I claim to love Him and not do what He asks?

Not because.........

I love You Lord                                             
not because I must
for 'must' comes out of fear
and Your perfect love casts out fear

I serve You Lord
not for what I can get
for 'get' comes out of greed
and You make me able to be content
with little as well as much

I follow You Lord
not because there is no other path I can take
for You have allowed me to try every path
and I can see.....
that what appears to be a broad path
leads to a confined space
but what appears to be a narrow path
leads out into a broad place

Simon Peter answered Him 'Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life: and we have believed, and have come to know, that You are the Holy One of God.' John ch.6 vs.68,69

Ecclesiastes ch.2 v.26 says that God gives wisdom and knowledge and joy to the man who pleases Him. So we need to find out what pleases God in order to experience this God given joy.
Wisdom, knowledge and joy will be given freely to us if our intentions are to seek to please God and walk in His ways, but as His ways and thoughts differ from ours,  Isaiah ch.55 v.8 says   'For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, declares the Lord',   we cannot possibly please Him without revelation from the Holy Spirit first on how to do this.  This is why it has to be the Holy Spirit that teaches us, because 1 Corinthians ch.2 v.11 says that 'no man knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God'.  1John ch.2 reads 'but the anointing which you received from Him abides in you, and you have no need that anyone should teach you; as His anointing teaches you about everything, and is true, and is no lie, just as it has taught you, abide in Him.'

James ch.1 v.2 tells us to 'count it all joy' when we meet various trials.  James goes on to say that the testing of our faith produces steadfastness and to 'let steadfastness have its full effect, that we may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.'  So to the christian these trials are necessary and good.  Walking in the Spirit may not always appear to be a bed of roses but it's fragrance will be every bit as beautiful  and much longer lasting than walking according to the flesh, or carnal mind.  We are encouraged to continue to walk in the Spirit, running the race that is set before us, in Hebrews ch.12 v.2 where we are told to 'look to Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame.'  If we do as we are encouraged here we will never have to endure what Jesus endured but, Glory to God, we will share in the joy that was set before Him.


The necessity of the ' Chief cashier's signature'

One day I found a part of a ten pound note on my bedroom carpet.  I could not think where it came from and was going to throw it in the bin.  My husband said 'I think you can claim a whole ten pound note if you take it to the bank.'  I said 'I don't think so', but phoned the bank and explained what had happened and what my husband had said.  The young man on the phone told me to pick up a form from the bank, fill it in and send it off to the bank of England.  The form asked for details of what had happened to the note.  I put down that I did not have a clue, told them what my husband had said, and sent it off with the part of the ten pound note.  For the price of a stamp it was worth enquiring.  I had a very nice letter back saying that as there was only fifteen percent of the note found, no chief cashier's signature and no promissory clause, they were unable to pay out, which I thought was fair enough.

I think probably the piece of the ten pound note may have come in on my shoe from outside, but the whole incident, including the words contained in the return letter, made me think of how there will be no joy set before those who are outside of the kingdom of God, who having only the part of the note, so to speak, hearing about God but not knowing Jesus.  For without the Chief cashier's signature, the Holy Spirit's presence in their lives, there is no promissory clause, no guarantee of eternal life.  The 'I promise to pay' is on the other part, the part with the Chief cashier's signature on.

There is absolutely nothing wrong in enjoying the things on this Earth that give pleasure, God has given us those things to enjoy, the natural things and things that can be bought with money.
True riches can only be found in Jesus Christ, but that does not mean that we are denied our heart's desire in the things that we love in this life also, it depends which we put first.   However, all the money in the world will never buy us the salvation and eternal life that God's Son has purchased for us.  God help those who don't know this if we don't share the joy of the Gospel of Jesus with them.


Treasure

What good is my gold if I don't have You
what use is my earthly treasure
all it can buy is a dream or two
a moment of worldly pleasure
What use is it if I have jewels and fine clothes
and I cut with a silver knife
if all of these things fall apart and decay
with my soul at the end of this life
No I'd rather have treasure in Heaven
gathered in barns of trust
than to have all the gold on this earth Lord
and my soul to return to the dust
Yes I'd rather have You Lord Jesus
You're worth far more than gold to me
for gold's only good for a lifetime
but You ....... for eternity

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on Earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in Heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal.  For where your treasure is there will your heart be also.        Matthew ch.6 vs. 19-21

39 comments:

joy Ojay said...

Having Jesus is having everything, and everything includes Joy. Thanks.

Brenda said...

You're very welcome Joy, and so right, having Jesus is having everything and everything in having Him does include Joy.

Reformed rebel said...

I find that when I read the Word of God that there is an excitement that wells up within me...I explain it as joy! I'm about to write a post on that. After reading yours I believe GOD is speaking to me about this.

Blessings Brenda...Chelle

Brenda said...

Praise His lovely name. What you feel when you read the Word of God is what I have always felt too ever since I was born again. It only gets better.
God bless you and keep you as you hear His voice Chelle.

Just Be Real said...

Brenda, I cannot tell you the timely word of Joy you post about is appreciated. Thank you. Blessings.

Brenda said...

I am so glad that this word is timely for you. That is what the church is about, sharing and caring. I can only write about what I have experienced. I am still learning after thirty years of being born again of God's Holy Spirit but I know one hundred percent that God is able to do what He promises, and He loves us in a way that no human being can. Something He showed me through something spoken at exactly the right time several years ago strengthened me when I was going through a hard trial, and wondering why. I heard the words 'In order to get to the top of the mountain you have to learn to climb.' I knew God was confirming His desire to make me stronger in my spiritual warfare. He had already given me the scripture 'They overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and the word of their testimony.' Keep climbing JGR.
God bless you

Just Be Real said...

Brenda, thank you and thank you for your lovely encouraging comment on my Blog. Blessings.

Darryl Orrell said...

Hi Brenda,

A beautiful post indeed and to me, it seems many tend to confuse happiness with joy. Of course, happiness is something that comes and goes based on external influences, but joy is something that emanates from within – that of the Holy Spirit and nothing can take Him away from us.

Blessings!

Brenda said...

Hi Darryl,
that's right, and the joy we get from the Holy Spirit brings also happiness in this world while we live out our lives. The Earth is the Lord's and everything in it, and I find that when we put Him first He gives us our heart's desires in a better way than we could ever bring about ourselves, and quite often when we are not expecting it. Sometime's I may be out looking for something that I would like to have, but it is too expensive. If I get a feeling of warning that I would be putting myself into debt just to have what I want, my carnal wisdom will have a bit of an arguement with God's wisdom and then I walk away and think 'I'd rather have my peace of mind and do without that.' Quite often, further down the line, something even better has turned up much cheaper, in a way that I've known it could only have been given at that time, in that place, in such a way by the Lord,which brings me far more joy than if I'd have done it according to what my carnal mind was telling me.

Priscy said...

thanks for sharing.. very insightful.

please check out my blog out @ www.apysworld.blogspot.com. I'm following you.

Brenda said...

Hi Priscy,
will visit your blog now, thanks for comment.

Sateigdra L Knowles said...

Wonderful Post. WHen I look around my life I know that nothing from this earth brings me the Joy that I have daily besides my Lord Jesus.

Brenda said...

That's true 'sateigdra,
life is so much better in the Lord and we are actually much more free to be what we were created to be. It is not until you are actually in that freedom that you realize what is professed as christianity by many is a restrictive lie. God made everything for man to enjoy, and with His wisdom we get the best that He intended us to have, and no death if we continue in His wisdom. The word for sin in Hebrew is 'chattah', it simply means 'to miss the mark'. I was shown this in an amazing way while I was in Scotland some time ago. It is just like walking along a shaft of light and stepping to the left or right into darkness. If we walk away from what God's ways, revealed to us by the Holy Spirit we walk away from the best that we can ever get.

Kelline said...

Hi Brenda,

Out of all of this writing (very good and profound), I was oddly struck by one thing. I went to Sateigdra's blog before coming here and I left the comment that God created the angels to obey His every command but we have been endowed with free will, and as such we love Him because we want to. I just found it to be spiritually linked to come here and see the words of your writings say essentially the same thing. To me, that's the scriptures coming to life, "it is same spirit working all in all."

Brenda said...

Hi Kelline,
yes I find that too, how lots of things dove tail together. It's like having a conversation in a room with people you may not have ever met, or not known for long, but you realize you are really of the same family.

T-Childs said...

A really good post as ever Brenda. Your blog is really something now; it looks fantastic and will draw lots of people in. We have a real cyber community don't we?!

Brenda said...

Yes we do Tim,
Thankyou for your kind comment. I really enjoy what you write about too. I learned something today that I didn't know before. There is a spam box on the blog, you probably know about it. Someone had left a message on my post called 'Love' but it had gone into the spam box, which I only learned about through reading a post on Just be real's blog. His comment is now on my 'Love' comments. He suggested a web sit which would lead to more viewers. I looked up the site by going into the link on his comment. It is called Internet Mafia I think. I haven't gone into it as I don't know what it is and I do not know enough about internet sites like this to just click on anything. I don't know if you've ever heard of it.

T-Childs said...

No, I haven't heard of Internet Mafia, Brenda.

Reformed rebel said...

Hi Brenda ~ Thanks for saying that about the spam. I didn't know about the spam box. I found it along with a couple of comments from people I knew. I have not heard of the Internet Mafia either.
Just wanted to thank you for your comments on what I write. They are much appreciated. I love hearing a little about your life also. No matter where we are we all have the same struggles but hallelujah...Jesus is alive!!!

Bless you Brenda
Chelle

Brenda said...

Yes that is right Chelle,
I find that every blog I come across has something which helps me to realize how much God loves everybody and how He is in us in so many different ways. Jesus is definately alive!

Kelline said...

Hi Brenda,

I just wanted to come by and let you know (in case you get this comment before the answer to your comment on my blog) that I got your request of information for linking one blog to another. I'll need to know specifically if you want to link from within a post or as a sidebar link. We'll work it out together until we find the solution you're looking for, okay?

Brenda said...

Hi Kelline,
thanks very much for your help. What i want to do is link one blog to another to start, but from within a post. I've managed the linking with the sidebar. 'Child of God' has mentioned something about linking regarding 'the sunshine project', and I must also go back and read that again too. It just came into my mind yesterday to start this other blog called 'Father I thank You for Jesus', when I was reading something I had written a long time ago. I welcome all the help I can get, and bloggers seem to be so helpful in advising one another. I have picked up bits and pieces from yours and JBR's blog concerning 'spam' which was really helpful. I love 'blogging' and feel like it is one big room with everyone in it.

Kelline said...

Hi Brenda,

I have decided that in order to give you the best directions I can for the link within a post, I must write it in a post. It would be much easier to format and explain all the little details that way. I give God the glory for allowing me to help. Here's one question I must make sure of, I do not see here on your blog where you say "it is a link from within my post," so that tells me your idea of a "post" and mine are different. A post is each separate titled box with the text in it that we write individually. Linking within a post means to write the post and to have a highlighted word or web address displayed within the post among the text like I did for my post before last with the pink words you would have seen. Those are links with a post that took the reader to an online dictionary to define the words in the text. As soon as I'm sure that's what you mean, I'll write a post with details included.

We'll figure it out together as sisters!

Brenda said...

Thanks Kelline,
yes I know what a post is but I am not sure what I want to use the links for at the moment. I saw on someone's blog where he was writing about something he had in another of his blogs and the word was in another colour as yours was, and when I clicked on it it took me over to his other blog. I have just managed to put together another blog, it'a not quite as I want it but I'm learning bit by bit. I think the best thing for me is not to rush ahead of myself, and when I get to what I want to do I shall ask if you can help if I can not find out how to do it myself. I am awful for not looking up instructions, maybe I need to do it a bit more. Like you said, we'll get to it, although I think I am probably more like 'mum' than 'sister' ha ha.

Kelline said...

Yes!! That's exactly what I thought you were asking and it's quite simple to do. I shall give you step by step:

1) Open your "new post" and begin typing. When you're ready to add the link, you will need to know the complete address of the website you want to add. You can do that by finding it first and writing it down, or you can minimize your current screen and open a new browser and go to the website, then highlight the address, right click and select "copy" then exit that site and return to your post that you're writing.

2) See above your text box where you're writing your new post, there is an icon that resembles the link of a chain, click that and open the link option.

3)Inside the link box you will see two open boxes. The one on the top is for you to type in whatever words you wish, and it reads "text to display". The box on the bottom is for you to either type in or paste that address you had just copied. Do this by right clicking your mouse and selecting "paste." Once you're satisfied that the text to display is accurate and the link has been tested (explained below) click "ok" to finish inserting the link into your post. It will highlight automatically.

4)Your new link and the text you wish to display should appear on your blog post with a menu box attached. You'll see words like, "remove" in that box. Click the "x" in the top right corner of that box to close that menu box and you're all done. The new link is inserted and you can continue typing.

Okay, here's something I noticed for my own link inserting, that if I don't be careful the new words I'm typing will attach themselves to the link and I have trouble getting that unattached. Beware of that. Also, when you're copying and pasting (or typing it in) your address, it gives you an option to test the link. I usually do that just to make sure of myself but only when I type out the address and not copy and paste it.

Okay, let me know if you have any other questions and good luck, 'mum' hahahahahaha

Brenda said...

Ok cheeky,
Thanks very much Kelline for all that info. I will make a copy of it for me to have at hand when I get to that stage. Am in the process of designing my other blog, but knowing me I will be constantly changing it. I really enjoy doing it.

Kelline said...

You're braver than I am. My friend and blog member, Monica, is always sharing cool links with me for background images and things but I'm too afraid to try to change anything for fear of it all clashing. Anyway, good luck with the new set up and if you need any help at all, let me know. We'll work together to figure it out!!

Child of God said...

Hi Brenda,
What a good, deep post on joy. There is so much information here that I do believe I will need to read this many times to gain all you have written.

I really loved...Is it by choice or predestined, that we do good or evil? What is good, what is evil, where is the plumb line? Is my evil somebody else's good, is my good somebody else's evil? To whom somebody else's evil is good, then it is good. To whom somebody else's good is evil then it is evil. To establish a common good or a common evil there must be a plumb line. Without a plumb line there is no such thing as good or evil - only chaos

God's Word is our plumb line and He is not a God of chaos but a God or order. :)

Thanks for sharing this great post on joy.

Blessings,
<><

Brenda said...

Hi child of God,
You're very welcome.
That really is true, God's word is our plumbline.

Brenda said...

Hi Kelline,
I have done my other blog. What I am trying to find out now is how I add my blog list to my profile. If I was to go into your blog and look at your followers. If I click on my own picture, information about my blogs does not come up. Do you know how I sort this?

Brenda said...

Hi Kelline again,
I've solved the problem after much fidling and searching.

Priscy said...

Thanks a lot for all the lovely and encouraging comments that you've been leaving on my blog. God bless you real good...

Also, I just put up the concluding part of the silent nights story, thought I should let you know Ma'm, bless you once again.

Brenda said...

Hi Priscy,
nice to hear from you, will go over and look at the end of the tale.

Jephyr said...

Hi Brenda,

It has taken my lifetime to be able to say Amen to this blog post!

First...it is beautifully written...and then it contains the truth!

Thank you for sharing your thoughts and words!

Jephyr said...

BTW...you wondered in your last response here if I'd received an e-mail reply from you...apparently blogger doesn't forward them on....but I did see your reply here.

: )

Brenda said...

Hi Jephyr,
thankyou for your kind comment. It is lovely to correspond with a brother in Christ. I am not sure if your second comment is for me Jephyr, BTW?, I think you may have accidently put it on my comments page.

Jephyr said...

Hi Brenda, I agree! It's great to be connecting with fellow Christians...especially when they are boldly sharing the truth that springs from their relationship to Jesus!

Actually that comment was mean for you. I'd posted on your oother blog and you asked if I'd recieved an e-mail reply. But I didn't...so I thought I'd let you know. : )

God Bless you my Sister!

Brenda said...

Thankyou Jephyr

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