There’s an empty place now where the tree stood all decorated, waiting for Christmas day. The decorations are put away, the presents incorporated into our regular stuff, the newness of those presents already wearing off. I’m trying to decide what to put in that place by the window where the tree was.
There’s an empty place in my heart and my life waiting to be filled with the new; the new year, new ideas, new opportunities, and newness I can’t even imagine.
I turned 50 this past year. In the old testament every 50th year was a year of Jubilee, a year of the Lord’s favor. A year to set the captives free, and to forgive the debts of those who owe. To restore families and end oppression. I’m seeking freedom from a variety of things in my life; debt, illness, ugly attitudes. Mostly though I’m seeking Joy for this year of jubilee.
One Word is the new resolution; choosing a theme rather than a list. Though I ‘ll still have my list of things to do, accomplish, put on, put off, and get better at, I hope to do it with the under-girding theme of Joy.
It came to me last week. Before the joy of Christmas morn, before the fun of presents and dinners and family. How to make those fleeting moments turn into a lasting attitude. I was reading Isaiah through December and came upon the chapter titled The Year of the Lord’s Favor.
“Instead of their shame my people will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace they will rejoice in their inheritance; and so they will inherit a double portion in their land and everlasting joy will be theirs.” Isaiah 61:7
Everlasting Joy. A double portion would be nice too.
Joy is one of those things (what is it anyway? an emotion, a feeling, a mind set?) that has been hard for me to wrap my brain around. It’s elusive, intangible so much more than happiness which is contingent on happenstance.
Experienced best while enJOYing the moment and mindful of the moment. When I am all there. But what if the moment is not pleasurable? Joy is also a looking forward in anticipation.
1. The passion or emotion excited by the acquisition or expectation of good; that excitement of pleasurable feelings which is caused by success, good fortune, the gratification of desire or some good possessed, or by a rational prospect of possessing what we love or desire; gladness; exultation; exhilaration of spirits.
JOY is a delight of the mind, from the consideration of the present or assured approaching possession of a good.
…an approaching possession of a good. I can always turn my mind, settle my thoughts on the approach of good. And what could be better than the promise of everlasting joy. But it will take a transformation and I can’t do it on my own. It’s a revolution to those resolutions that often depend on the power of our will.
You want to be transformed? Here’s where it happens: Abide in Him, He will abide in you, and there will be radical, real-life change in your life in the year ahead. ~Wendy Speake
I’ll explore the meaning of joy this year and will seek to put on joy by abiding in Him and putting God’s Word in my heart with the hope of transformation.
Will you join me?
I will be memorizing Psalm 16 for the first 12 weeks of the year. One verse a week starting Monday. I’m working on printouts to aid us each week. If you’d like to join in sign up for email notifications and the reminders will drop right in your inbox.
Here’s to Joy, Unspeakable Joy all the year long.
“Keep me safe O God, For in you I take refuge” Psalm 16:1