“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
Galatians 5:22-23 NIV
I am, by nature, a joyful person. But some days I wake up and I can feel something is off. Even after my first cup of coffee my joy seems like an object just beyond my grasp. And then my kids wake up. They act like their normal, crazy, whiney, toddler selves (no, my kids do not whine all the time, but yes, they whine on a consistent basis), and because of my mood they seem to push all the wrong buttons. My joy seems to be driven farther and farther away.
I believe the Holy Spirit allows us to recognize moods like this so we can also recognize we have a choice: continue down the path of a joyless, impatient, frustrating day, or hit the reset button. For me hitting the reset button looks something like this: picking a worship song and locking myself in my bathroom or closet for two minutes while I blare the music as loud as a my phone will allow (my kids will survive, the house may not, but in faith I choose to believe my kids will survive). Sometimes I shout the lyrics to get my frustration out. Sometimes I simply kneel in surrender. Whatever it is, I do something to turn my focus back on Jesus and off of my mood. I may not walk out of the closet smiling and laughing like everything is peachy-keen all of a sudden, but I do walk out knowing I serve a God who is faithful, who loves me, and who provides His strength in my weakness.
In the book of Nehemiah, He tells the Israelites to not be mournful, for the joy of the Lord will be their strength. I encourage you today to take a minute and reflect upon a tool that helps you remain rooted and joyful in the Lord. Make it a habit to use that tool frequently. This world is full of things that can easily steal our joy, determine to remain rooted in Christ. He will be your strength.
Photo Credit: https://www.freeimages.com/photo/joy-1537988