Joy in our new life with God
In the Word
This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24
Of the Word
The Old Testament books of Ezra and Nehemiah tell of the Israelites’ return from exile to Jerusalem. They had been forced from their homeland and separated from God. Now they were returning, hoping to rebuild their ruined city.
As they resettled, Ezra assembled them and read the Word of the Lord to them. As they listened, they were convinced that they had sinned; they felt shame and despair. But Nehemiah’s words brought comfort to their sad, repentant hearts. “Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10b).” Their sorrow turned to joy as they celebrated the beginning of a new life.
Our lives are new each day because of God’s love and forgiveness through Christ. May we, too, learn to rejoice in the blessings God has bestowed on us, especially the gift of salvation given to us through faith in Jesus.
Walking with my Lord
Lord, when daily struggles pull me away from You, send the Holy Spirit to bring me closer. Help me to find peace, joy, hope and strength in You. In Jesus’ name. Amen.