4 Ways to Seek Joy Every Day
There are few things that give me more joy than seeing the season change from dark, gray, frozen winter into a bright, rejuvenated spring. Even the threats of pollen and sunburn can’t dampen the excitement of getting back outside to see everything come to life! It’s these days, when everything seems bright and cheerful and exciting, that I wish I could bottle up for the other days.
I know as Christians we don’t want to be prideful, and if this is something you struggle with, then perhaps skip to the next section. But if you are like many who struggle to see yourself in a positive light, I’d challenge you to boast a little bit in your journal!
What are the gifts that God has given to you? Are you a hard worker? Write about a project you are excited to see finished. Do you feel that God has gifted you in evangelism? Write about your success sharing the Gospel. Are you hospitable? Write about how well you think a gathering you planned went. God has made you good at something, and it’s ok to be excited about that thing.
If you struggle with body image, for both men and women, this could be a great time to notice and write about the fantastic things your body can do. King David reminds us that we are all “fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:14). That’s something we often hear when talking about new babies, but it isn’t something any of us grows out of! We are no less fearfully and wonderfully made as adults than we were as children.
If you struggle to see your body in this way, then take some time to write down any little wins. Your beautiful moment of the day may have been your legs carrying you on a nice long walk. Or your arms wrapping a friend in a hug. Or even a new shirt that you thought made you look really good! Without coming at this from a position of pride, just try to see yourself the way God sees you: beloved, beautiful and strong.
Photo credit: Pexels/Negative Space
I love telling people about this journal. And I was thrilled a few weeks ago when a friend told me that she had started keeping a journal to write good things in every day!
I really enjoy sharing this idea with others for two reasons: first, it’s a joy to share joy with others! Talking about some of the beautiful things that I’ve written about or started noticing more often can help others to start thinking that way too. And everyone can use a little joy in their life – if you see something nice, point it out!
But I also like talking about this project to encourage others. The entire idea was born out of a struggle with anxiety and fear. In that season of life, God laid 2 Timothy 1:7 on my heart. It says “For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” God doesn’t want us to be walking around in constant fear. He has gifted us with His peace, but we sometimes have a hard time recognizing and accepting that.
In this day and age, so many of us are struggling with anxiety, depression and general fear. Taking time to share something that helped me with a friend can be such a great blessing for both of us.
And one final note on sharing the good things with someone – you can also share the good things with God! Our Father loves to hear from us, and prayer isn’t just a time to ask for things. Take some time every once in a while to praise God and thank Him for the things in your journal, big and small!
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for every good, beautiful, and praiseworthy thing in this world! God you are such a magnificent creator, to have gifted us with so much beauty and joy! You care about the tiniest details, and you don’t forget anything that’s happening in my life. I confess Lord, that I often focus too much on the negative. I worry and stress, often over things that won’t even happen. I pray that you would make me more aware of the little blessings in my life everyday God. I know that you care for me, physically, spiritually, emotionally and relationally. You sent your Son to earth to rescue me from my sins and give me hope. But you’ve also blessed me in so many little ways to make my time on earth pleasurable. God, I pray that as you help me to notice these beautiful things in my everyday life, that you would turn my heart back to praise you for them. Help this joy to shine through me, so that others would come to know you and the joy that you give.
I ask these things in your name, Lord,
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Bethany Pyle is the editor for Bible Study Tools.com and the design editor for Crosscards.com. She has a background in journalism and a degree in English from Christopher Newport University. When not editing for Salem, she enjoys good fiction and better coffee.