this morning I woke up with a certain scripture. After some research, I found it is written in Nehemiah. This is one of the rare situations that I like the German translation better than the English - it says something like "the joy in the Lord (or about the Lord) will give me strength".
So I started to think about what normally brings joy to a human being. It begins very early with birthday parties and Christmas - I think there's nothing like those days when we were little and someone gave us a a gift and it turned out to be something we wished to have for a long time.
I am very sure that this is not the kind of joy the Bible speaks about. Yes, we are happy and motivated for a certain time. I remember when we got games for Christmas, we could play with them all day long - but only for a certain time. And then to play with it got "normal" and wasn't as exciting as in the beginning. So that kind of joy gave some energy, but it was good or used for the subject itself and gone soon enough.
So what does it mean to be joyful in the Lord or feel joy about the Lord? It is a joy that doesn't revolve around my ego or comes from dreams that came true or desires that were fulfilled. It's not the joy about the blessings He gives me (I am thankful for those, though, that's not the point). Summarized, it is not the joy that comes from the things I recieve from God like forgiveness of sin, a holy life, gifts (of the spirit) and blessings. It is pure delight in the fact of knowing Jesus intimately and to only concentrate on Him as a person. I tried this today. Even if it hadn't had the side effect of providing an inner strength I didn't know before, I would like to encourage you to seek Him and get to know Him better! You will find a treasure unknown!