Joy is so important in a Christian’s life that God included it in the fruit of the Spirit, which one receives at salvation. Even though it is often under-utilized, the joy that God gives has the power to turn a cloudy day into a day of celebration and heal the soul. Let me give you an example:
Last week the rain began in the middle of the night. It continued into the morning. Upon awakening, I realized my body was really aching. My friend, Girt, says it is the barometric pressure in the atmosphere when it rains. I did not want to go to the YMCA for aerobics class, but I forced myself; hoping it would help. I moaned and groaned throughout the class. Then I joined my friends at the wisdom table (see June 29, 2017 blog – The Wisdom Table for an explanation of this table).
There was a stranger at our table. He had a lot of sheet music and a guitar. We all introduced ourselves and talked about the cloudy, rainy day. Then the stranger began to sing and play the guitar. We had a sing-a-long of old familiar songs. Our spirits began to lift. Then he taught us a song I had never heard before, but it caused the joy of the Lord to bubble up out of my soul. The name of the song is “Reckless Love” and it tells of God’s love for us. The chorus is as follows:
“Oh, the overwhelming, never ending, reckless love of God
Oh, it chases me down, fights “till I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine
I couldn’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, Still you give yourself away
Oh, the overwhelming, never ending, reckless love of God.”
As we sang about the reckless love of God, we all began to feel better. We talked about the goodness of the Lord in our lives and how grateful we are for it. Then we realized we did not hurt so much anymore. Endorphins of joy coursed through our bodies, and we felt good. The aches and pains from knee and shoulder replacements, arthritis, and a myriad of other ailments vanished. We sat up taller and walked straighter. Oh, the power of the joy of the Lord!
Psalm 28:7 explains what happened to us: ‘The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoiceth; and with my song will I praise him.”
Aches and pains being relieved in the bodies of seniors as we sang praises to God may not impress or interest you. But I challenge you to put this practice to the test. The next time you are in a bad way (whether it involves your health, relationships, debt, etc.) start singing songs of His goodness. Remember that He gave you victory in the past and that He is the same God today. If you can’t do anything else, just start saying the name “Jesus” into the atmosphere. The Rance Allen Group tells us in song that there is something about the name Jesus:
“Oh how I love the name Jesus It is the sweetest name I know Some people say I’m crazy but I can’t explain The power that I feel When I call your name”
The joy of the Lord is a healing balm from heaven. Use it often to aid your body, mind, and soul.