‘The Joy of the Lord is your strength’ – Nehemiah 8.12From Helen Machell
This month started very differently to how it is now. It turned cold, it was the earliest I have put the heating on, I had been discouraged about a lot of things, including the small ones, not sleeping – I was in a really negative cycle that I knew I wanted to get out of.
As I was blindly scrolling through Facebook, I came across a person I follow who had come up with the idea of #Joytober. She called it crazy, I knew it was God’s timing. She challenged her followers to be thankful for one thing every day and to find joy in this.
I knew I wanted joy and to be really thankful for things. I knew it would be hard but I took on the challenge – each day I use the sentence starter from a list and complete it, being thankful for it for that day. I even started journaling about it (fancy word for writing stuff down!). I knew thinking about the little things would be great, but that if I searched deeper, I would find a Joy in the Lord that was much better and a far more joyful place to be.
At this time of an ever changing situation, we could all do with a little more Joy. So many things it seems are being taken away from our control and looking to the Lord for our guidance and joy is a real comfort. We cannot change the situation we are in but we can change our outlook and where we look to. I do not find joy in hearing the news over and over again. I do not find joy on social media/games or …………(insert your own here).
As each day has gone on I’ve found that I am more thankful for things throughout the day and in turn finding more joy in each of those. The Joy of the Lord really is my strength.
I’m so thankful to God that this lady had the crazy idea of #joytober because now I do have joy back, and I know where to find it if (when) I lose it again. Beginning one small thing that God has given me at a time and being thankful for that.
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