Question of the week 9-16-9: What is your strength?

This weeks questions comes from my thoughts on the Joy of Lord.  The Bible tells us the Joy of the Lord is our strength. Now that is a tough concept to understand and worth exploring.  It seems to come down to stepping away from self and turning to God. The Joy of the Lord is our strength.  It is nothing of our self. It is not how God created us.  Our strength is found in God’s joy.  I think in really to understand this we really need to gain understanding of the word strength.  The Merriam Webster definitions is as follows:

  • Main Entry: strength
  • Pronunciation: \ˈstreŋ(k)th, ˈstren(t)th\
  • Function: noun
  • Inflected Form(s): plural strengths \ˈstreŋ(k)ths, ˈstren(t)ths, ˈstreŋks\
  • Etymology: Middle English strengthe, from Old English strengthu; akin to Old High German strengi strong— 
  • Date: before 12th century
  • from strength to strength : vigorously forward : from one high point to the next

    synonyms see power

    1 : the quality or state of being strong : capacity for exertion or endurance
    2 : power to resist force : solidity, toughness
    3 : power of resisting attack : impregnability
    4 a : legal, logical, or moral force b : a strong attribute or inherent asset <the strengths and the weaknesses of the book are evident>
    5 a : degree of potency of effect or of concentration <chili peppers in varying strengths> b : intensity of light, color, sound, or odor c : vigor of expression
    6 : force as measured in numbers : effective numbers of any body or organization <an army at full strength>
    7 : one regarded as embodying or affording force or firmness : support <you are my love and my strength>
    8 : maintenance of or a rising tendency in a price level : firmness of prices <the strength of the dollar>
    9 :basis —used in the phrase on the strength of

    The Hebrew definition of strength in Nehemiah 8:10 is as follows:

    מעז מעז מעוּז מעוז


    So clearly it shows that strength pertains toward an ability to stand firm and stand up under an attack or trial.  The ability to encounter anything in this life that entails suffering by they the trials of life or spiritual attacks and warfare comes for the Joy that results in surrender to God’s Kingdom.  It is only through surrender that one receives God’s joy.   If you are turning to anything else as your strength you will falter.  You may withstand for a time.  You may hold up under the pressure but ultimately fail. For none of us of our own strength can withstand.  Yet, in God’s strength found in the Joy of the Lord there is nothing that can penetrate.  So what are you looking to for strength and where are you finding it?   If you are weak, turn to God’s strength.  And this very thought I think comes down to the passage where we are weak God is strong.  God may well be able to work more through moving us to operate in areas of weakness than areas he has given us strengths, talents, or abilities.


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