Always be full of joy in the Lord. I say it again—rejoice!
You and I can choose where we focus our thoughts and attention but we can’t choose joy.
Joy is a gift!
A gift found in God’s presence. So, the more time you and I spend in the Lord’s presence the more joyful we’ll become. How cool is that!
You will teach me how to live a holy life. Being with you will fill me with joy; at your right hand I will find pleasure forever. Psalm 16:11
The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me, and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of thanksgiving. Psalm 28:7
It’s such a simple equation, I wonder why I fail at it so often.
Focusing on junk equals dissatisfaction and sadness. Focusing on Jesus and the blessings He gives equals joy.
Jesus makes it possible for us to have joy even when life when there is junk all around us.
I like the way the Message puts it…
So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from His perspective. Colossians 3:1–2
I’m making a list of ways to “act like it.” Ways I can pursue the things over which Christ presides.
Seriously, aren’t you ready to stop shuffling along, with your eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you?
The NIV puts it this way . . . “set your hearts on things above.” Maybe you’ve even memorized it that way. However you remember, let’s make it a goal for the days and weeks ahead to habitually turn our thoughts toward “Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith.”
25 Wonderful Ways to Find Joy in Jesus
1. Focus on Jesus.
I have placed the Lord always in front of me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be moved. And so my heart is glad. My soul is full of joy. My body also will rest without fear. Psalm 16:8–9
2. Make a list of your blessings.
Every good action and every perfect gift is from God. These good gifts come down from the Creator of the sun, moon, and stars, who does not change like their shifting shadows. James 1:17
3. Take a break from the chaos.
“Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee.” ~St. Augustine
4. See everyone as someone who is precious to God.
As God opens His heart to be known by us and as He builds His heart into us, His love will flow through us to those who are in desperate need of His forgiveness, His compassion, His healing, and His life.” ~Bill Mils
5. Be kind, caring, and compassionate.
You must be kind to each other. Think of the other person. Forgive other people just as God forgave you because of Christ’s death on the cross. Ephesians 4:32
6. Give yourself a daily dose of encouragement.
“God made you unique and wonderful with purposes in mind for your life. No matter where you go, you cannot get away from God who made you, loves you, and will help you be what you should be.” ~Unknown
7. Smile more – at others and in the mirror
“A warm smile is the universal language of kindness.” ~William Arthur Ward
8. Take regular breaks from the news and social media.
“It’s the simplest properties that will help you clear yourself of negativity … The profound power of a simple prayer. The strength of a deep breath. The gentle guidance of good music.” – Jeffrey Wands
9. Sing, dance and spin around. Do something fun.
Let them praise His name with dancing. Let them sing praises to Him with timbrels and a harp. Psalm 149:3
10. Make random acts of kindness a habit.
“Three things in human life are important: the first is to be kind; the second is to be kind, and the third is to be kind.” – Henry James
11. Be a student – never stop learning.
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” ~Dr. Seuss
12. Invest generously in your relationships.
“One day spent with someone you love can change everything.” ~Mitch Albom
13. Savor each moment. Don’t wish your life away.
Once you stop rushing through life, you will be amazed how much more life you have time for. ~Author Unknown
14. Keep moving – it increases those happy endorphins.
“An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.” ~Henry David Thoreau
15. Accomplish a goal – even a small one.
“I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.” ~Edward Everett Hale
16. Forgive and let go of resentment.
Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Colossians 3:13
17. Look for reasons to laugh.
“Laughter is the most beautiful and beneficial therapy God ever granted humanity.” ~Chuck Swindoll
18. Do your best even if it’s not perfect.
“When we do the best that we can, we never know what miracle is wrought in our life, or in the life of another.” ~Helen Keller
19. Enjoy simple pleasures like a fireside picnic or a walk in the park.
“A nice warm shower, a cup of tea, and a caring ear may be all you need to warm your heart.” ~Charles F. Glassman
20. Ask questions – listen to understand.
He whose ear listens to careful words spoken will live among the wise. Proverbs 15:13
21. Set limits. It’s okay to say “no.”
“You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage pleasantly, smilingly, and non-apologetically – to say “no” to other things. And the way to do that is by having a bigger yes burning inside.” – Stephen Covey
22. Express love with words and actions.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 1 Corinthians 13:4–5
23. Learn God’s promises.
“God does not give us everything we want, but He does fulfill His promises, leading us along the best and straightest paths to Him.” ~Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Never stop praying. 1 Thessalonians 5:17
25. Surrender to God’s will.
Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. Romans 12:2
I want lasting joy. Joy found in Jesus.
So I’m focusing my heart and mind on Him as I prepare to celebrate His birth and I’m praying He will help me turn this into a habit that will last for the rest of forever.
I will find joy in Jesus and…
By God’s grace, I will live with joy and I’m praying you will, too.
Wouldn’t it be awesome if Jesus’ followers became known for being the most joyful people on the planet?
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