Nehemiah 8:10 is my life verse.
Then he said to them, “Go your way. Eat the fat and drink sweet wine and send portions to anyone who has nothing ready, for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.
Why would I choose this verse?
It began with a study of joy many years ago and realizing that Spiritual Joy was not the same as happiness. That when we receive Joy from the LORD we are filled in a way that is not based on our circumstances but on HIS Presence. Happiness, like a roller coaster, has highs and lows based on the circumstances. Joy is even more noticeable in difficult times, times when happiness seems inappropriate but joy buoys a believer through the tough times and therein lies its strength.
Later I would come to understand the context of this scripture. The temple was being rebuilt and they had just discovered books of the Law that no one had read much less lived by in a generation. The people were grieved by their transgressions and fearful for the future among so many enemies.
Nehemiah and Ezra comforted them in the fact that the LORD knew they were weak and unlearned. He had brought them back to the Torah not to punish them for not keeping it but to reintroduce them to the plumbline of His Righteousness. How often do we realize our lives have gotten off track and mourn when we realize how far off the rails we really are? This is a reminder that HE loves us and while HE may allow circumstances to draw us back to fellowship HE does not punish our return but welcomes us as a Loving Father waiting on his children. This is strength, to have His Joy of your return poured into your life when you still stink of travel and pig sty!
I am still learning, this is a process. I claimed this verse in high school… 30 years ago. The layers continue to amaze and convict me. I struggle with a compulsive personality and food is an enormous issue with me. For years I abbreviated the verse not to include the part about eating and drinking but I realize now that the LORD gave that verse to me knowing the struggles to come. Another beautiful perspective on that first part of the verse is the command to give to others less fortunate. This is a passion for my husband and me.
Another beautiful perspective on that first part of the verse is the command to give to others less fortunate. This is a passion for my husband and me. We have worked in disaster relief for years and bringing fresh water and a hot meal to folks who have lost everything is being the hands and feet of Jesus. We also support a local group Alabama Childhood Food Solutions (ACFS) who meet needs day in and day out for the food insecure in our community.
Do you have a personal relationship with your Creator who loves you more than you could ever ask or imagine? If not check out this website and feel free to message me!