Christmas gifts won’t bring you joy.
There. I said it. Allow me to explain?
Christmas gifts are so much fun to receive. And to give. Making a Christmas list can be a blast! (Anyone else send out a text blast to the family saying “My official 2019 Christmas wish list is here!”?) But you know what happens right after Christmas? My birthday and more gifts! (Follow up, text: “My official 2019 birthday wish list is here!”)
Here’s the problem. There will always be another occasion for us to ask for another gift. And we easily fall into thinking that ______ (fill in the blank with whatever gift you want at the moment) will make us happy, and that our life will be better. It might! For a week. Maybe two. And then we’re on to wanting the next new thing.
Happiness is based on our circumstances. It’s a feeling. It’s great, but doesn’t last long. Joy, on the other hand, is a way of living. It permeates everything we do.
Happiness is based on life going well.
Joy is rooted in Jesus.
Happiness rises and falls.
Joy is consistent.
Are you beginning to agree that those Christmas gifts waiting for you under the tree won’t bring you true joy? If gifts can’t fully satisfy, then what will bring us joy? I’m so glad you asked.
Unwrap True Joy
Here are three things to do during the Christmas season that will bring you real, lasting joy!
1. Spend Time with Jesus
In Psalm 16:11, the psalmist wrote,
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.
Where do we find joy? In Jesus’ presence! This season gets crazy busy with parties and dinners and Christmas activities, but if you prioritize spending time with Jesus, joy will begin to grow.
2. Focus on Others
Want to know something that’s hard to do in December? Focus on other people. Sure, we’ll buy gifts for our family members and maybe a few close friends, but so often we’re actually focused on what we can get, aren’t we?
Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”
You will find true joy as you focus on others in this season. Put your phone in your bag and give 100 percent of your attention to the person in front of you.
3. Play the “I,” “Me,” “My” Game
This is a game I made up and try to use to keep Christmas from being all about me, me, me. This year, try paying attention to how much you say “I,” “me,” or “my.” Every time you use one of the three words, it’s time to use “you,” “us,” and “we.” This trick has helped me become more focused on others than myself all the time.
This Christmas, enjoy the gifts you receive while reminding yourself that what brings true joy is loving others well. Once you’ve practiced these suggestions, let the LiesYoungWomenBelieve.com team know if it filled your joy cup up just a little more!
Merry Christmas, LYWB.com readers! It’s a privilege to share words and stories with you on this blog, and our team cannot wait to keep writing to you in 2020—but we need your help to keep identifying lies and replacing them with God’s Truth! The Lies Young Women Believe blog is donor funded. (Did you know that?!) If you’ve been encouraged through this ministry, would you consider supporting us by giving a few dollars? You can learn more about our year-end needs here.
Thank you, readers! We are honored to seek Jesus with you.
— Samatha Nieves, Lies Young Women Believe blog content manager