More than once I’ve been asked if I’m smokin’ something or if I’m hittin’ the hard stuff a little too early and often. Sometimes, I’m asked both on the same day. Now, while I do have an often cheery disposition, I can’t blame my personality all on genes. I get a kick out of God and He just makes me plumb happy.
But you want to know what steals my joy faster than a politician steals votes? When I am too busy for time with God or time in the Word. Then, my Mary Poppins self does a quick 180 and turns into Cruella DeVille.
Why does this zap my joy? For me, it’s because I begin to see my little world as “all about me.” I become mighty selfish and reek ingratitude. In Beth Moore’s Bible study, Living Beyond Yourself, she describes how abiding in Him and the salvation He brings is paramount to having joy. She says:
“Sometimes we get so wrapped up in ourselves that we become the center of our own universe. Salvation is His. It’s about Him. Following Christ breaks the stranglehold of self in our lives as He becomes the center of our universe. We decrease; He increases (see John 3:30). Joy results.”
My life won’t reflect Him if I’m not spending time with Him. I know seasons come and go where time reading the Bible is difficult if not impossible. When my twins were babies, you can bet your bottom dollar that any quiet time I had was spent taking the world’s fastest shower. I mean no condemnation. Never! But, you can also bet your bottom dollar that when I am able to read through a few verses here and there, my day just goes better and my joy meter skyrockets.
Also? Staying in the Word not only changes me, it changes those around me! Because my demeanor is lifted, I help lift those around me. And when they ask what happy juice I’m drinking, I can tell them Who I’m drinking in, not what.
“Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then will I go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and delight.” Psalm 43:3-4)
Visit Bonnie (aka the Faith Barista) to read more joy stories!
Lisa notes... says
I have to work on staying in the Word too to keep my joy up. Great post.
“Salvation is His. It’s about Him.” That’s the center of our joy.
I love the way you word that…He is the center of our joy!
Over the last few months, I’ve been trying so, so hard to fit more prayer and Bible-reading into my day. I’ve been shocked to take in how much closer I feel to the Lord after incorporating little prayer/reading spurts into my daily routine. Thanks for this encouraging post!
You bring up a good point: sometimes a quiet time can just be a prayer said while washing dishes or reading a verse while waiting in the kids’ pick up carpool line at school. Awesome!
That is so right! I am so much happier and less stressed when I start my day with God. Good reminder! (And I LOVE Beth Moore! I’m starting an online study of hers next week!)
I love her, too!
And Dawn? Thanks for comin’ around these here parts. I always love seeing you!
Muthering Heights says
Oh my yes…I’m the same way!
I just discovered your blog and I am already in love! Your posts are so encouraging and relevant in my life already!
Thank you for making my day with every post you write!
Gosh, Tay, thank you for making my day with your sweet comment!
Faith Barista Bonnie says
Kristen! I love your chasing blue skies blog! You are a breath of fresh air… it’s the perfect name for your place over here. I am the SAME way. 😉 I need my whitespace with God to let go of myself. You have a way of bringing a smile to me and encouraging me to turn myself to Him. (pst… who’s that hot girl in the convertible babysitting on a sunny day!?) *hugs*
Bonnie!!!!! Well, I don’t see a hot mama in that pic, just a tired one who was excited to have some hot wheels for once! HA!
I love what you’ve written at your place about needing whitespace with God. YOU are always, always encouraging!
Fred Rhome says
Excellent article and easy to understand explanation. How do I go about getting permission to post part of the article in my upcoming news letter? Giving proper credit to you the author and link to the site would not be a problem.
Fred, thank you for visiting! Could you email me more about the nature of your newsletter? As long as it is appropriate, I’d have no problem granting permission for you to reprint part of this post!