Stay Alive All Your Life - Part 8
Chapter 10 – Your Life Can be Full of Joy
Joy increases as you give it. Joy can give you better health and stimulate your enthusiasm. There was a study done by a physician and a writer who found that 35 – 50% of ill people were sick principally because they were unhappy. There’s a curative power in getting patients to find some joy.
The Bible tells us often to rejoice. Joy and harmony are synonymous concepts. When you are in harmony your mind, body and soul operate as one.
How do you begin a practice of joy? How do you train yourself to live in joy?
First, simply learn to think joy. If you wish to live a certain way, think that way over a long period of time. Whether you want to be more calm or more courageous or funnier – it works for anything. Think persistently along the lines you desire and then begin to act on the supposition that you are just that. Act as though you felt the way you want to feel. Wake up thinking it’s going to be a great day and that you are glad to be alive. Think joyfully, talk joyfully, act joyfully and pretty soon you will be joyful!
But it’s not just thinking. You have to do too. If you are determined to improve yourself, your mind must be controlled by you instead of controlling you. The person who is used to thinking negatively may find this hard at first. Dr. Peale suggests they make a list of every joyful experience they’ve had at the end of each day. Then they should think about the experiences and relive them as they read their list.
Instead of thinking in terms of dissatisfaction, discontent and gloom, look for the joy in things so you’ll have something to write down! Here’s a great Bible verse to consider: John 13:17 “If you know these things, happy are you if you do them.” This means that the Bible tells us how to live right. If we aren’t obeying, if we live in fear or hate or doing things we’re ashamed of, we aren’t going to be happy. “If you know these things, happy are you if you do them.” We need to –
Quit hating people – start loving them.
Quit being mad at people – start liking them
Quit doing wrong – do right
Quit being fearful – trust God
Quit thinking of only yourself – go out and do something for others
We really do know how to be happy. We just have to do it!
And then – have Jesus in your life.
Christianity is a joyful faith. Look through the New Testament for references to joy. There are many. Share that joy with others.