A Feast for Joy

Dolores Nasrallah

READ : Nehemiah 8:5-12

Holidays conjure up a variety of feelings. For some the anticipation of Thanksgiving and Christmas bring happy images of family reunions, gift-giving, and a hearty, succulent food feast. For others, this time of year brings feelings of dread, loneliness, even bouts of depression. Whether you approach this season with happiness or sadness, the joy of the Lord can be a source of strength to those who choose to embrace it.

The people of Israel chose this joy. As Ezra read the book of the Law, they mourned and wept over their shortcomings. But Ezra instructed them to choose joy instead by celebrating God’s faithfulness to his people over the generations.

What is the joy of the Lord? Is it more than just a positive, cheerful sentiment? We believe it is. We invite you to join us in this month’s devotions to explore the meaning of joy as a byproduct of a life rooted in God. We cannot make ourselves feel joy. Rather, it is a natural expression of an intimate relationship with our Creator. True celebration springs from a well of genuine gratitude. How can you prepare your heart to feast on God this holiday season?


God, may your joy be my strength.