I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow!
Some time ago I was sitting alone in a room waiting for my daughter to finish her music lesson when I got this sudden, strong feeling that I call a “Holy-Spirit-led nudge.” Specifically, in that moment, I was being prompted to ask the teacher after the lesson if I could stop and pray over her. Now this may not seem like a big task for many people, but at the time this was completely outside of my comfort zone. Generally I’m not in the habit of asking people that I don’t know that well if I can stop and pray over them, especially if they haven’t shared a prayer request with me. I argued with the Lord in my spirit, saying things like, “I don’t know what you want me to pray, and Lord, she’s going to think I’m weird. What if she tells me no? She’ll be mad at me for making her late for her next lesson.”
I would like to tell you that I was immediately obedient, but it actually took a few more weeks of having this same feeling at the same time before I took action. The Lord never did answer any of my questions about why or how, but instead I had to trust that he would use my act of obedience to accomplish whatever purpose he desired.
So a few weeks later, when I sat down in that quiet room with my daughter’s music teacher, I began to pray, trusting the Holy Spirit to give me the words. I don’t specifically remember what I prayed, but when we were finished I walked out of the building to my car with an unexplainable joy bubbling up from inside of me. Nothing impressive had happened in my physical world, and I had not yet seen any confirmation that what I had done or prayed had any impact. But I had been obedient, and I couldn’t hide the huge smile on my face and the overflowing feeling of happiness in my spirit and emotions as I drove away. Later that day I received a text from the teacher expressing how much my prayer had meant to her. She mentioned how my Holy-Spirit-led words had specifically addressed a decision she had been wrestling with, and she said it was exactly what she had needed in that very moment. Wow – God is so good, and my joy doubled upon reading her words. Psalms 32:11 speaks to this unexplainable joy that comes when we put our faith into action:
So rejoice in the Lord and be glad, all you who obey him! Shout for joy, you whose hearts are pure.
Think About: Are there any areas of your life where you have delayed being obedient to the Lord? Could you step out in faith, trusting him to do the rest?
Pray: Father God, I know you love me and want the best for me in every circumstance. Help me to trust you when you ask me to do the hard things. Give me a glimpse of the joy that will follow when I take those first steps of obedience. Thank you for helping me!