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EnJOY Everyday Life | Weekly Devo


I love sports. They bring me great joy. I love playing sports, I love coaching sports, and I love watching sports. I often tell my teams that the goal is to work hard to become the best that we can be while enjoying the process. What is the point of going 30-0 if you are miserable, and going 0-30 just isn't fun.


Joy is a feeling of pleasure and happiness that comes from Jesus, our faith, and the hope that something good is going to happen to us and through us. Good things and bad things happen every day. Choosing joy means that we find and celebrate the good things that happen in everyday life. One of my major goals is to find joy in everyday life and not have to wait for or rely on moments of celebration to experience joy.


Sports are supposed to be fun, but there are a lot of things that steal the joy out of sports.

You won't love everything about sports just like you won't love everything about life. When I played basketball in college, I was miserable at first. We ran so much that I thought that I was on the track team, and our coach yelled at us more than he talked to us the first few months.


It just wasn't fun and there was very little joy.


But then I realized that each practice had a rhythm. We would do a warm-up, we would stretch, we would do some offensive skill work, and we would do some defensive skill work. Then, we would scrimmage. That was the fun part. The drill work warmed me up and prepared me for the fun part that was scrimmaging. Of course, it wasn't fun when our coach would yell at us for not executing, but I had to train myself to not hear the yelling but to listen to the message behind it and have fun competing and playing basketball.

I had to learn to look for and find joy in a regular, tough practice.

The other thing that happened was that we had a great teammate who was unselfish and shared his joy with everyone else on the team. He brought energy and enthusiasm every day. He had fun and he helped everyone else have fun. He was always talking, always smiling, and always encouraging all of us.


He taught me how to be a blessing to receive a blessing. He blessed us every day with his energy, and we started doing the same for others. We MADE it fun.


So, how do we find joy in everything that we do? It starts with knowing Jesus. Jesus is the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God (Hebrews 12:2).

Even when Jesus faced death, He possessed a deep joy beyond anything the world can offer. Just before He faced the cross, He spoke to His disciples and said, "These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be complete and overflowing." (John 15:11).


Choosing joy does not mean that you won't have problems. We will miss more shots than we make, and that is okay. We won't naturally get along with all of our teammates, we will lose games, and we will get yelled at and corrected by our coaches and parents. Jesus knew this and said that in this world we will have tribulations, but to take heart because he has overcome the world (John 16:33).


We also have to replace negative thoughts with thoughts of joy. Inside all of us are two mindsets. One mindset is an energy vampire that sees the bad in all situations. The other mindset is an energy giver that sees the good and joy in all situations. They are both fighting for space in our minds and lives. The mindset that wins is the mindset that we feed.


Research says that you can't be stressed and thankful at the same time. Being thankful and finding joy in everyday life floods your brain and body with positive emotions that lift you instead of the stress hormones that slowly drain you.


As a man thinks in his heart, so is he. If we think about all of the problems and sad things in our life, we can't have joy. But if we think positive thoughts, if we appreciate the blessings in our life, and if we think about the everyday things that bring us joy, we can unlock a joy that overflows in our life.


The joy of the Lord is our strength (Nehemiah 8:10). So often we are drained because we don't have joy as our fuel. Find joy by focusing on, praying about, and meditating on things that bring you joy every day. Find joy by doing things that bring you joy more. Find joy through having hope that all things work together for the good of those who believe (Romans 8:28).


This Week


1 - Choose hope. Every morning and every night, tell yourself, "Something good is going to happen to me and through me."


2 - Actively look for the good things happening in your life, especially when you are feeling down.


1 - I have told you these things so that my joy and delight may be in you, and that your joy may be made full and complete and overflowing. - John 15:11


2 - Your words were found, and I ate them, and your words became to me a joy and the delight of my heart, for I am called by your name, O Lord, God of hosts. - ‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭15:16‬ ‭ESV‬‬ 3 - For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning. - ‭‭Psalm‬ ‭30:5‬ ‭ESV‬‬ 4 - Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. - ‭‭James‬ ‭1:2-4‬ ‭ESV‬‬ 5 - These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. - ‭‭John‬ ‭15:11‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Prayer

Thank you for the blessings that you have given me. I pray that I can find love and joy in everyday life. I pray that your joy flows through me and flows out of me. I pray that I can find joy in everything, and I pray that your joy outweighs any stress, anxiety, doubt, or negativity that I might feel or experience. In Jesus's name, I pray, amen.


For a Google doc version of this devo, click here: Week 5 Devo

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