How do we stay strong as a couple? By keeping our focus on the main thing…our joy in The Lord. “The joy of The Lord is our strength.” If we begin to feel weak maybe it is because we have lost our joy in The Lord. We must encourage each other to retain that joy in The Lord in the midst of life’s challenges. Have you ever had to fight for joy? That seems ironic, however, it can be a battle at times. Why? Because the enemy tries to steal every good thing that God wants us to have. Pressing into the “joy of The Lord” is what will keep us. Praise is an important aspect of joy. So Isaiah 61:3 says, “To comfort all who mourn and provide for those who grieve in Zion to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of joy instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.”

The key to maintaining joy is in these passages from Isaiah. Our joy comes as we put on the garment of praise. As we sing high praise to God about His greatness and majesty, He enters into our praise by way of the Holy Spirit. We exchange the spirit of despair for the garment of praise. In that moment the Holy Spirit comes upon us and we receive the oil of joy which is the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

God inhabits the praises of His people (Psalm 22:3) so that when we begin to praise Him it attracts His attention and He comes closer to hear what we are saying (Psalm 116:2).

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