Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, and uphold me by Your generous Spirit. Then I will teach transgressors Your ways, and sinners shall be converted to You.
Robbers are after a precious jewel—your joy. They know their thievery will blur your focus on serving the Lord; they know that Christians who aren’t joyful are ineffective. Guard your heart against these enemies of joy.
– The Blahs. Are you in a spiritual rut? Are you excited about what new thing God will bring to your life, or are you expecting nothing more than business as usual? “Look with your eyes and hear with your ears, and fix your mind on everything I show you; for you were brought here so that I might show them to you” (Ezekiel 40:4).
– Self-absorption. Whether it’s a painful loss, an emotionally-trying relationship, or even something as wonderful as redecorating the living room, we sometimes fall into the trap of turning our focus inward instead of looking outward for the needs of others. “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others” (Philippians 2:3-4).
– Anger. Anger and joy repel one another. When anger enters your heart, joy finds the nearest exit. “Cease from anger, and forsake wrath; do not fret—it only causes harm (Psalm 37:8).
– A Critical Spirit. Have you assumed the role of Chief Critic in your church, home, or workplace? Those who are looking for flaws in others are usually able to find what they’re looking for, all at the expense of a light heart and joyful spirit. “Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the hearts” (Proverbs 21:2).
Let this be a day when you overflow with the joy of your salvation. Your spiritual joy will nourish your soul until you cannot help but tell others about the wonderful Savior, leading people to Jesus Christ. Let’s get excited about the salvation of the Lord!
from A Passion for Purpose