Saturday, January 01, 2011

Finding J.O.Y in 2011

Happy 2011 Everyone! Hope your New Year's Eve was safe, healthy and reflective. I know as I begin this journey into 2011, I find myself looking back--thinking about those loved ones I have lost in the last 12 months and my loved ones who have lost others/lost something (marriages, pets, jobs, etc) as well.  However, in reflecting back on people or things I have lost or have less of, I find myself wanting more.
Yes, re-read that sentence again. I really meant what I typed.
I want more.

Wanting to make more (actually the most) of my time here on earth.
Wanting to be  more productive.
Wanting to make more of a difference.
Wanting  more to not take each day for granted.
Wanting more to not take relationships for granted.
Wanting more to not take God for granted.
Wanting to find more

JOY as in:

1. Jesus -Putting him first in my daily routine, beginning each day with some quiet moments in prayer and reflection and praise. Prioritizing my life to put Him first and to try to consciously keep Him the priority throughout my day. (In which case, I really need to rearrange and priortize my "wants" in the above paragraph appropriately.

2. Others: Developing, nurturing and growing my servant's heart. Some days I do this well, but truthfully and sadly, many days I fall short of exhibiting a servant's heart with a selfless, positive attitude. Many times I find myself resentful of the daily "yuk"-the things that need to get done, to be put away, to be cleaned up, things that can and oftentimes are overlooked and unappreciated by my family. Just being honest here.
But, perhaps, if I change my attitude toward service and remember that Jesus washed the feet of his disciples without a complaint, than who am I to have a begrudging, bad attitude when it comes to serving others, especially my family? Why is it sometimes we have a kinder, my gracious, generous, selfless attitude when we serve strangers, or acquaintances than we do our own "family?" Is it because they are so much more appreciative or is it possibly, (just possibly) that the attitude I serve with is diversely different?
Just musing out loud here.

3. Myself: Putting my self last, (well, actually in this case, third, if we're counting). Not to the extent that I am a doormat for others to walk all over, but placing myself last because the realization has hit me over this past year(s) that when I have followed the sequencing of the acronym above, I have found myself to be happier, more-fulfilled, and more content. When I haven't ordered daily life in this sequence, I have found myself feeling frustrated, resentful and taken for granted. How must Jesus feel to know I've put him last on so many occasions?

I'm just sayin, as Dr. Phil says, "Well, how's that been workin' fer ya?"
To that I respond, "Not so great."

So, I'm moving forward to 2011, with a hope and some prayers, that I will spend the next 365 days (God willing) living and serving a

 "J.O.Y.-ful" life, with a selfless spirit and servant's heart.

Props out to Ali E for providing the impetus for me embarking on this year long journey with her little online class entitled "One Little Word." Click here for more info:


  1. My dear sweet Susan! Last night when I heard of your "JOY" resolution how I thought it was so ironic that YOU are actually exhibiting the functions of JOY...Jesus, Others and then Yourself... and you want more! You are one of the most giving, caring and ministers to others that I know. I count myself truly blessed to be counted as one of your friends. If you only knew what a difference you made in helping me get through and heal my heart over the past year and a half.....I wish you did! I love you! May I consider JOY more in my life too!

    Thank you so much for the awesome New Year Eve dinner and fellowship! We will always count this night as a landmark in our lives.

  2. Yes, Yes, and Amen. Great post, Friend! Glad to be on the JOY-hunt w/ you in 2011! ~Sally

  3. What a beautiful word! Enjoy your journey..x

  4. Love, Love, Love this. I need to remember your words.


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