I can remember when the joy of the Lord came upon Richard in a powerful way and his life was transformed. Many people had been praying for him at that time because he really needed a breakthrough. But being filled with the joy of the Lord was something I hadn’t yet experienced. I told the Lord, “You can do whatever You want with Richard, but count me out.” It’s not that I was skeptical…rebellious was a better word.
Week after week I’d sit in church watching people being filled with the joy of the Lord. I’d sit there saying, “Isn’t that great!” What I really meant was, Don’t get near me with that wacky stuff!
It was a while before I was filled with the joy of the Lord myself. The morning it happened, I fell over the front row pew where the pastor and his wife were sitting and rolled down the aisle, laughing hysterically all the way. I can remember saying, “This can’t be happening to me.” The Lord knew that there were things in my life that He had to break down, and He was using His joy to do it.
Maybe you’re like I was. Maybe you think that certain things of God are good for other people, but not for you. James 4:6–7 says, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. Submit yourselves therefore to God.
I believe there comes a time in all of our lives when we have to bypass our logical minds and our opinions and pray, “Lord, if You have something for me that I haven’t received yet, I ask You to break down all the barriers in my life and manifest it.” A prayer like that can open you up to God and transform your life.