“This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10b (NIV)
When Nehemiah proclaimed these words, it was to remind God's people that He was their source of strength. The promise is that strength comes when we, His people, rejoice in Him. The 5th Century BC restoration of Jerusalem is a great story. Nehemiah told them that they did not need to grieve but rather rejoice. In fact they had the joy of the Lord at their disposal and it gave them strength. We too need strength and we can find it in the joy which God gives. When we get discouraged and sad, when we feel week and overwhelmed, when we don't feel like doing anything for God, and maybe even do not feel like living, that is when we can remember that God does take care of his own – the bible tells us so. Because of God's love and care for us we can have joy. It is a joy that comes from God let's be strong in it.