“The joy of the Lord is my strength.”
These are the words that I woke to one morning in Cote d’Ivoire. What a great way to wake up! And what a foreshadowing of things to come.
That day, we arrived to meet a Project Hannah prayer group for lunch. We heard their voicesbefore we saw them. As we got closer their singing became louder, and we saw that the womenwere dancing in praise to the Lord. In one song they danced in a circle bent over with their hands behind their backs. Through translation I learned that they were demonstrating the way a mom carries her baby, tied with a cloth to her back – and they were asking the Lord to carry them and their burdens on His back.
What a beautiful picture. And it was so symbolic of these precious women. They have little or nothing and life is difficult, yet they have hope in Christ.
They have learned the freedom of letting the Lord carry their burdens. They have learned peace in bringing themselves to Him and allowing Him to carry them. And they have learned of the strength gained in praying together in community, in helping one another and in sharing one another’s burdens. And in this they are finding their joy and strength.
“…Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” (Nehemiah 8:10, NIV)