How to experience true joy in the new year

Are you experiencing the Christmas blues? You know, where so much anticipation and preparation goes into Christmas that the days following feel mundane and purposeless? I know there have been years where I have felt it too. There are weeks of activities, shopping for your loved ones, food to cook and lots of planning. Then, once Christmas is over everything else seems regular or even boring.

The way we live our days during the Christmas season shouldn’t differ from our life in January or April or September. Our joyful attitudes, giving hearts, and anticipation for the days to come should last year round.

If you want the excitement and drive from Christmas to last past the month of December and become your “normal” then following these 4 simple daily choices will create a culture to your day that will be filled with purposeful excitement and joy.

Purpose: Have you ever met someone who would talk about their job and what they do for a living with such excitement that you know this person is doing exactly what they were created to do? Knowing you have a purpose in this life and knowing what the purpose is important. But, what do you do if you don’t know what that purpose is? Or what do you do if you know the purpose but just don’t know how to start walking in it?

Read this: How do I know what God’s will is for my life?

The more you spend time learning about your Creator the more you will learn why He created you. Find time in your day to dig into the word. Whether it’s in the morning, at night, or in the car- do what is best for your schedule. Reading/listening to the word daily will change your heart, soul, and mind more than you could imagine.  If you want to live a purposeful life, then spend time with the Author of your purpose. The more you spend time learning about your Creator the more you will learn why He created you.

Joy: Having joy in your life means it’s constant and never based on your current life happenings. The great thing about joy is that it’s a choice. If choosing joy is hard for you then spend more time in His Word, the more you do the more your heart and mind will choose joy. Eventually, it will become a part of who you are. Even during the hard seasons, you will find yourself thanking God and praising Him.

Wake up every day praying that matter what happens that day- you choose Jesus and the joy only He gives. I’ve seen people struggle with this and worry that it’s something they will never deeply feel. I strongly believe the ONLY way any of us can live a life with joy in our hearts is by investing in our relationship with Jesus. Making the choice to live with joy will mold you to walk in His purpose for your life.

Generosity: One of the reasons Christmas is such an amazing time of the year is because people’s hearts are focused on giving. They run to certain stores to get just the right gift and wrap it just the right way for the person they love. There is freedom in giving, and it shouldn’t only exist in your life around Christmas time. Constantly be praying and seeking out ways to give to others with your time, finances, and resources. When your heart is angled towards other people’s needs above your own, God blesses that. He will bless you to in turn bless others. When your needs take second place, you will be surprised at how much purpose and joy there is in giving.

Excitement: Don’t you wish you could wake up every day like it’s Christmas morning? Christmas morning has a special place in our year but the truth is, the excitement for the day ahead of you can last beyond Christmas. When you spend time with Jesus learning more about Him and your purpose, choosing the joy He offers and looking for ways to live generously, then you will have excitement for your upcoming days. Your days will be filled with God-given purpose and there is simply nothing more exciting than that. Your days will be filled with God-given purpose and there is simply nothing more exciting than that.

My purpose in writing this to you today is because I want you to live your life full of purpose, joy, generosity, and excitement. Many struggle with this idea and don’t think it’s possible, but I am here to tell you that it is! Of course, I go through seasons where I struggle, too. My husband and I went through a season of uncertainty this past year, though after spending intentional time worshipping God and praying for others, our outlook completely changed and our desires shifted. We were reminded that we are right where God wants us and He gave us a refreshing excitement for the lives we’ve been given.

I believe God can and will do the same for you.

Now read this: Five goals for a healthy marriage in 2018

This post originally appeared on HeatherMargiotta.com and was republished with permission. 


Heather Margiotta is a Christian Writer and Speaker from northeast Ohio. She is a wife to a loving husband and a mother to two handsome sons. She received a bachelors degree in Theology and writes about her faith, adoption, relationships, and grief on her blog, HeatherMargiotta.com. Besides loving Jesus and her family, Heather is obsessed with coffee, local pizza joints, and nail polish. Find her on Instagram and Facebook.


 

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