Joy is a Condition of my Heart Week 3
Before this study, have you ever really thought about joy being a heart matter?
In our day to day life, there are so many uncertain things, uncontrollable things and scary things. Those are the kinds of conditions that we simply have no control over. The condition of our heart is completely ours to control.
You may have heard the saying
J = Jesus
O = Others
Y = Yourself
While this saying is completely true, the problems come in when we forget the “Y” in joy.
As ladies, we are typically so busy being wonder woman wife, caring daughter, fearless mom, awesome employee, awesome employer, leader, blogger, and a whole host of other things that we forget to take some time out for ourselves.
Kay reminds us that to nurture and build joy in ourselves we must:
- Focus on Grace
- Trust God for the Future
- Have Balance in our Life
- Practice Acceptance
“Happiness comes unbidden and unexpectedly and can leave just as abruptly; joy can be available anytime, anywhere, anyplace but it is a result of our decision to choose it.” ~ Kay Warren
As a child of the King, doing the things listed above doesn’t give us the right to trample all over God’s amazing grace and live a life that will kill our relationship with God, but on the other hand, never obeying the Word of the Lord will also kill our relationship with God.
Choosing joy isn’t always easy, but that is where our faith grows.
All of us at some point will experience great sorrow, but IN that great sorrow is an Almighty God that will never leave us alone.
Doing the things Kay reminds us of will get our minds and hearts in the right direction. Take time daily to do something for yourself that will warm your heart and bring a smile to your face.
We forget that WE are loved unconditionally by our heavenly Father even though He knows the worst in us. He chooses to love us in spite of our short comings. Yes, we want to get better, yes we want to reflect HIS love and compassion and yes, we want to ultimately live like Jesus. As long as we remain in our human body, we will fall short.
Extend yourself some grace while trusting the Lord. When you fall short, stumble or even freak out over various situations – ask God to forgive you, forgive yourself and then take the next step. Doing this for yourself will allow you even more freedom to nurture joy in others.
Nurturing Joy in Others:
- Believe the Best about Others
- Offer Nonjudgmental Love
- Empathize with other’s Feelings
- Appreciate Other’s efforts
When we have been hurt by others, beat down or even unappreciated, many find it difficult to extend their heart to spread joy to others. It’s painful.
Sometimes believing the best about others will turn out that we were completely wrong in our beliefs. They control what we see, they show us only what they want us to see, and then the truth comes out (it always does) and we are hurt because we are taken advantage of. Don’t let this stop you from making a difference in the heart and life of others.
We need to push past our hurts, our fears and the things that hold us back from making a difference for others. We will disappoint others as well as be disappointed.
We also need to push past our guilt when trying to make a difference for others’. Many of us desire to do more or value what we do for others based on the “cost/price” we had to pay.
Look at the few things Kay listed for us and tell me the value. Believe, offer, empathize and appreciate are all things that will not cost us a single penny, but are priceless! When we are giving these types of gifts, we often negate their value and as a result, feel guilty for “not doing more.”
At Spreading Joy, I’m always reminding people that everything you do impacts hearts. Everything!
When you are making a difference for others, train your heart not to look at the price tag. Look at the smile of those you are spreading joy to!
If finances are an issue, I have written over 100 ways to make a difference without spending a single penny. http://spreading-joy.org/site/50-ways-to-make-a-difference-without-spending-a-penny/
Use them freely. There is a free pdf at the end of that article as well as a link to an additional 50 ways to make a difference without spending any money.
Have fun spreading joy to others!
Answer any or all of the following questions
- On a scale of 1-10 how regularly do you trust God for the future
- On a scale of 1-10 how readily do you believe the best about others
- On a scale of 1-10 how readily do you forgive others
- On a scale of 1-10 how often do you applaud others’ efforts