7 Ways to a Joyous Day


Ever have one of those bad days? You know—not kind of bad, but bad. You mess up at work. You have a terrible fight with your spouse. Your doctor calls you in for some tests. A day you just wish you could crawl into bed and pull the covers over your head. When you have a day like that {and let’s face it, we all do} you have several choices. You can retreat into paralyzing fear, act out inappropriately, or just go into complete denial.

But there’s actually another choice: You can rejoice.

Rejoice? Why would I want to rejoice?!

Because it’s the only real way out. “This is the day the Lord has made,” the psalmist tells us, “We will rejoice and be glad in it.” This day? This messy, painful, frustrating day deserves a chance? Yes! Every day, whether it includes lost finances, a dented bumper, or a bad doctors report, deserves our full presence. My pastor has been reminding us that “nothing is wasted.” So not even this day and what you are going through right now is wasted if you give it to God and allow Him to turn it into good.

Still not convinced? I want to show you seven strategies you can use the next time you find yourself in a day that holds more than you think you can endure.

Fret Not

Anxiety will ruin your day, your mood, and your confidence. I know. I get plenty of opportunities to fret: Will I make the right decision for my child? Did I give the right advice to the one who asked for help? Worry can be deafening and even screams louder than a tantrum throwing toddler. A friend who once told me, “I always assume everyone likes me.” For me that is a crazy idea. But I decided to give it a try—not just once, but to make it a regular thought habit. I started by giving myself and my audience the benefit of the doubt: We’re all here because we’re comfortable with one another. That habit has changed how I view my world.

You can’t add one more day to your life by fretting. Worry doesn’t take away tomorrow’s troubles; it only rids today of its strength.

And why should you worry when you are surrounded by friends wherever you go?

Forgive Freely

Forgiveness is not about saying what a person did is okay or that they’re right. It’s about making a decision, a choice to let the hurt and anger go. It frees you up to move on. Forgive someone and you’ll discover that that person has virtually no power to hurt you anymore. Then you’ll be able to focus on what you really care about: the joy of life.

Fear Not

Fear is a joy-killer. It can make me stressed out, short-tempered, unhappy.

What’s the opposite of fear? Trust. I do better when I trust in God—and go for a short jog. He’s in control of my life.

Place your fear in God’s hands and you’ll find that you have greater peace each day.

Live Passionately

Discover your passions by looking back over your life for those sweet-spot moments where you’ve had ‘Yes!experiences. String those together, and you’ll begin to see new possibilities for your life.

Nothing gives the day greater joy than a good wallop of passion that comes from doing something from the soul.

Get Over It!

Sometimes I’ll have a bad day just by waking up on the wrong side of the bed. I don’t know why I’m grouchy, but I can stay that way for the rest of the day.

If you look long and hard enough, you’ll find something to bellyache about. So quit looking!

If you have health problems, you probably feel justified in complaining. Being in pain is no fun. But try this instead of griping: Take a break from your problems. Face each day determined to dwell on the positives. Think about what you have to look forward to. Write a list and put it where you can see it. Try lending an ear to someone in need. Be especially kind to people with whom you have only one encounter—a waiter, a taxi driver, a store clerk. You may have only one chance to be kind.

When you start living for others, it’s pretty hard not to get over whatever’s bothering you.

Collect Your Blessings

Recognize all that you have, and finding blessings to collect will become easy. The key to a joyous day? Make gratitude your default emotion. Say, “I can find things to be grateful for in this day.” Let your thoughts be positive. Expect good things to happen. Seek out people who can encourage you. Over time, you’ll find that God’s list of blessings is longer than your list of burdens.

Once in a race, I was running next to a 66-year-old grandma. I was about to give up, but she urged me on. “Just hang in there, you’re doing really well. Look how far you’ve come.” I ran next to her and started congratulating myself for all the miles I’d run, not the ones that were still ahead. It worked and I finished the race strong.

Color Your World

One day I was at the beach, enjoying the balmy day I had so looked forward to. The sand was soft and cool. Tufts of clouds drifted across a deep blue sky. I leaned back in my beach chair and closed my eyes. That’s when a seagull decided to use my chest as target practice. Yuck! I poured water on my shirt, trying desperately to get the stain out. And just like that, I’d lost the color of the day. Almost.

Maybe you were caught in bad traffic or your flight was cancelled or you haven’t gotten over that nagging cold. How can you see the world in vibrant color on a day like that? Many of us can’t. There I was on the beach…about to allow one errant seagull ruin my day. I moved my chair, trying to regain the magic of the morning. And then I practiced all these steps I’ve been writing (passionately) about: forgiving the bird (after all, it was only doing what came naturally), not fretting or fearing, counting my blessings (what a beautiful beach) and mostly, getting over it! No, it wasn’t too late for my day to be a joyous one.

The world is full of vibrant color. Don’t let it lose an ounce of its luster. Assume this day is going to be good, and it will. God made it so.

By Max Lucado

{Know someone who is facing hard times? The Drying Pot; And The Refining Fires Necessary To Become A Vessel Used By God}

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