“The joy of the LORD is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10 KJV).
“The Lord would have all His sons and daughters happy, peaceful, and obedient. Jesus says, ‘My peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.’ ‘These things have I spoken unto you, that My joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.’ John 14:27; 15:11. SC 124.1
“Happiness that is sought from selfish motives, outside of the path of duty, is ill-balanced, fitful, and transitory; it passes away, and the soul is filled with loneliness and sorrow; but there is joy and satisfaction in the service of God; the Christian is not left to walk in uncertain paths; he is not left to vain regrets and disappointments. If we do not have the pleasures of this life we may still be joyful in looking to the life beyond. SC 124.2
“But even here Christians may have the joy of communion with Christ; they may have the light of His love, the perpetual comfort of His presence. Every step in life may bring us closer to Jesus, may give us a deeper experience of His love, and may bring us one step nearer to the blessed home of peace. Then let us not cast away our confidence, but have firm assurance, firmer than ever before. ‘Hitherto hath the Lord helped us,’ and He will help us to the end. 1 Samuel 7:12. Let us look to the monumental pillars, reminders of what the Lord has done to comfort us and to save us from the hand of the destroyer. Let us keep fresh in our memory all the tender mercies that God has shown us,—the tears He has wiped away, the pains He has soothed, the anxieties removed, the fears dispelled, the wants supplied, the blessings bestowed,—thus strengthening ourselves for all that is before us through the remainder of our pilgrimage. SC 125.1
“We cannot but look forward to new perplexities in the coming conflict, but we may look on what is past as well as on what is to come, and say, ‘Hitherto hath the Lord helped us.’ ‘As thy days, so shall thy strength be.’ Deuteronomy 33:25. The trial will not exceed the strength that shall be given us to bear it. Then let us take up our work just where we find it, believing that whatever may come, strength proportionate to the trial will be given. SC 125.2
“And by and by the gates of heaven will be thrown open to admit God’s children, and from the lips of the King of glory the benediction will fall on their ears like richest music, ‘Come, ye blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.’ Matthew 25:34” SC 125.3
Dear Heavenly Father, Thank You for everything. I cannot name all the blessings I have received. Your blessings overwhelm me. I am grateful and highly favored. Still, I long for more of You. Please bless me to be one with You as You are with Your Son Jesus. And bless me so that others might be drawn to You when they see me. In the precious name of Jesus, I pray and thank You. Amen.
NOTE: These devotionals began as daily texts to encourage my academy roommate and dear friend of nearly 50 years, until she suddenly passed a few weeks ago (Feb 2023). Now I continue to compile and send them to anyone who wants to receive them and to her family in honor of their mom. First, I pray and look for a Bible verse or passage and find a suitable commentary (or vice versa) and add a prayer. Some days, only a Scripture and prayer are ordered. I might even add a song. If you agree to receive them, then this way I not only honor God but the memory of a very dear friend whom I desperately miss. My personal prayer is that God will bless me to find ways to multiply this gift. So please feel free to forward to your loved ones or to anyone, as God leads you. I’m calling them Barb’s Devotionals.