I’ve had the words ‘Choose Joy’ in picture frames in my room for months now. I bought them thinking it would be a good reminder, on the days I wake up grumpy, to decide I wouldn’t let it last the whole day. You’d have to ask my friends whether it works…I’m not sure they’d say it does all the time!
Joking aside, I don’t think I fully knew what choosing joy looked like until this quarantine season. Don’t get me wrong, I know how to choose joy when I am meeting with my friends, worshipping Jesus, dancing or planning an exciting weekend. During those times I expect to find joy and often it doesn’t disappoint! But when it’s just the mundane things – studying, making dinner or being at home (remind you of any particular time?!) then it’s a lot harder to find.
I was struck when reading the bible by how many times joy is spoken of and promised to us. It’s amazing how the authors who wrote about joy in the bible were often being persecuted, in tough places or even in prison!
“In your presence there is fullness of joy” – Psalm 16:11
Many of the books in the bible weren’t written when things were easy or when they had busy exciting weekends planned, but when the only thing they had to bring them joy was their relationship with Jesus. This made me realise that being joyful is a choice we can make in all circumstances, rather than just an outcome of our good days!
I’ve found that when I decide to find the gold in my day, it’s always there! I’ve started writing down some of the things that bring me joy each day. Noting it down makes me realise that the mundane can be fun, and makes me grateful for the big and small things.
I’ll let you take a peek at my list from this week and maybe you could write your own…
- Zoom chats with friends
- Watching Basil Brush on YouTube (don’t ask why!)
- Having a bath not a shower
- Having time to run
- Lunch time worship
- Cutting my hair (eek!)
I’m conscious that when life goes back to normal, I want to make sure I don’t lose my joy, even if it’s not a particularly special or fun thing I’m doing. This time has taught me that being joyful really is a choice and that there is gold to be discovered in every day!