Friday, May 30, 2008

Words of Encouragement

Coming to God through Jesus is the only way for us to have the joy of repentance. Our dark lives gain the light of Christ and we can say, the joy of the Lord is our strength.

Nehemiah said, "Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is sacred to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength." - Nehemiah 8:10

Happiness in Jesus. Repentance brings joy. The people heard the words of God and began to weep because of the realization of their sinful behavior. Yet, Nehemiah tells them, no do not weep, do not be grieved, instead be joyful and celebrate because the joy of the Lord is your strength.

When God brings to us our sinfulness, we too weep at the realization of our sins. Yet just as quickly as we are grieved because of our sinful behavior, God comes and brings us joy. Jesus allows us to move from grieving to rejoicing because of his sacrifice of blood.

We can celebrate God's goodness unto us. When deserved to be completely destroyed, God's love bought us back from captivity. Jesus' blood brought us with a price from the captivity of sin. When the Holy Spirit convinces us of our sinful condition and we come to the place of repentance, we now have access to the great abundance of God's love. What a reason to celebrate!

I pray for us today, that God would help us find the joy in repentance. There is a time of repentance for the unsaved, but there is also a time when the saved must come to repent for those sins that have crept back into their lives. God will quickly forgive and restore your joy.