Tag Archives: Joy Jar

The 12/25/13 Joy Jar

24 Dec

Today is Christmas which represents the birth of Christ, God Among us. This event is about hope for the human condition and hope for the redemption of mankind. It was a little over a year ago that moi began the ‘Joy jar’ exercise in response to that end of the world Mayan Calendar thing, which represented despair. It has been a journey of reflection and self-discovery which will continue long after Christmas even though the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise ends today. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the hope of a better tomorrow represented by Christmas.

Pamela Rose Williams compiled 21 Inspirational Christian Christmas Quotes:

“He was created of a mother whom He created. He was carried by hands that He formed. He cried in the manger in wordless infancy. He, the Word, without whom all human eloquence is mute.”
Augustine

“To the American People: Christmas is not a time or a season but a state of mind. To cherish peace and good will, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas. If we think on these things, there will be born in us a Savior and over us will shine a star sending its gleam of hope to the world.”
Calvin Coolidge

“How many observe Christ’s birthday! How few, His precepts!”
Benjamin Franklin

“Mankind is a great, an immense family… This is proved by what we feel in our hearts at Christmas.”
Pope John Paul XXIII

“Christmas can be celebrated in the school room with pine trees, tinsel and reindeers, but there must be no mention of the man whose birthday is being celebrated. One wonders how a teacher would answer if a student asked why it was called Christmas.”
Ronald Reagan

“Christmas is a day of meaning and traditions, a special day spent in the warm circle of family and friends.”
Margaret Thatcher

“It is impossible to conceive how different things would have turned out if that birth had not happened whenever, wherever, however it did … for millions of people who have lived since, the birth of Jesus made possible not just a new way of understanding life but a new way of living it. It is a truth that, for twenty centuries, there have been untold numbers of men and women who, in untold numbers of ways, have been so grasped by the child who was born, so caught up in the message he taught and the life he lived, that they have found themselves profoundly changed by their relationship with him.”
Frederick Buechner

“Christmas is based on an exchange of gifts, the gift of God to man – His unspeakable gift of His Son, and the gift of man to God – when we present our bodies a living sacrifice.”
Vance Havner

“There is no connection between the worship of idols and the use of Christmas trees. We should not be anxious about baseless arguments against Christmas decorations. Rather, we should be focused on the Christ of Christmas and giving all diligence to remembering the real reason for the season.”
John MacArthur

“The Almighty appeared on earth as a helpless human baby, needing to be fed and changed and taught to talk like any other child. The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the Incarnation.”
J.I. Packer

“Christmas waves a magic wand over this world, and behold, everything is softer and more beautiful.”
Norman Vincent Peale

“You can never truly enjoy Christmas until you can look up into the Father’s face and tell him you have received his Christmas gift.”
John R. Rice

“The greatest and most momentous fact which the history of the world records is the fact of Christ’s birth.”
Charles H. Spurgeon

“Hark the herald angels sing, “Glory to the new-born king.” Peace on earth, and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!
Charles Wesley

Who can add to Christmas? The perfect motive is that God so loved the world. The perfect gift is that He gave His only Son. The only requirement is to believe in Him. The reward of faith is that you shall have everlasting life.
Corrie Ten Boom

“If God would grant us the vision, the word sacrifice would disappear from our lips and thoughts; we would hate the things that seem now so dear to us; our lives would suddenly be too short, we would despise time-robbing distractions and charge the enemy with all our energies in the name of Christ. May God help us ourselves by the eternities that separate the Aucas from a Comprehension of Christmas and Him, who, though he was rich, yet for our sakes became poor so that we might, through his poverty, be made rich.”
Nate Saint

“Jesus was God and man in one person, that God and man might be happy together again.” George Whitefield

“Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” … Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”
Angel Gabriel, Luke 1:28-33

… “My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts; he has brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent away empty. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.”
Mary of Nazareth, Luke 1:46-55

“Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.”
An Angel, Luke 2:10-12

“Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us.”
Some Shepherds, Luke 2:15
http://www.whatchristianswanttoknow.com/21-inspirational-christian-christmas-quotes/#ixzz2oMZSPWUz

Merry Christmas and a better tomorrow.

The 12/24/13 Joy Jar

24 Dec

Today is Christmas Eve and it heralds the birth of Jesus, God Among us. This is a festive occasion. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the herald day before Christmas, Christmas Eve.

Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King,
peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations rise,
join the triumph of the skies;
with th’ angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”
Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new born King!” http://www.hymnsite.com/lyrics/umh240.sht

Christmas Eve represents many things:

… God descends to re-ascend. He comes down; down from the heights of absolute being into time and space, down into humanity … down to the very roots and sea-bed of the Nature He has created. But He goes down to come up again and bring the ruined world up with Him. One has the picture of a strong man stooping lower and lower to get himself underneath some great complicated burden. He must stoop in order to lift, he must almost disappear under the load before he incredibly straightens his back and marches off with the whole mass swaying on his shoulders.
CS Lewis

The best part of Christmas is not the presents we receive, but the presence of God with us. Christmas can be a hint, a foretaste of the celebration God’s family will enjoy together.
Randy Alcorn

If we could condense all the truths of Christmas into only three words, these would be the words: “God with us.” We tend to focus our attention at Christmas on the infancy of Christ. The greater truth of the holiday is His deity. More astonishing than a baby in the manger is the truth that this promised baby is the omnipotent Creator of the heavens and the earth!
John F. MacArthur, Jr.

God grant you the light in Christmas, which is faith; the warmth of Christmas, which is love; the radiance of Christmas, which is purity; the righteousness of Christmas, which is justice; the belief in Christmas, which is truth; the all of Christmas, which is Christ.
Wilda English

Take Christ out of Christmas, and December becomes the bleakest and most colourless month of the year.
A. F. Wells

If New Testament Christianity is to reappear today with its power and joy and courage, men must recapture the basic conviction that this is a Visited planet. It is not enough to express formal belief in the “Incarnation” or in the “Divinity of Christ”; the staggering truth must be accepted afresh… that in this vast, mysterious universe, of which we are an almost infinitesimal part, the great Mystery, Whom we call God, has visited our planet in Person. It is from this conviction that there springs unconquerable certainty and unquenchable faith and hope. It is not enough to believe theoretically that was both God and Man; not enough to admire, respect, and even worship Him; it is not even enough to try to follow Him. The reason for the insufficiency of these things is that the modern intelligent mind, which has had its horizons widened in dozens of different ways, has got to be shocked afresh by the audacious central Fact… that, as a sober matter of history, God became one of us.
J. B Phillips

One response was given by the innkeeper when Mary and Joseph wanted to find a room where the Child could be born. The innkeeper was not hostile; he was not opposed to them, but his inn was crowded; his hands were full; his mind was preoccupied. This is the answer that millions are giving today. Like a Bethlehem innkeeper, they cannot find room for Christ. All the accommodations in their hearts are already taken up by other crowding interests. Their response is not atheism. It is not defiance. It is preoccupation and the feeling of being able to get on reasonably well without Christianity.
Billy Graham

It is Christmas every time you let God love others through you… yes, it is Christmas every time you smile at your brother and offer him your hand.
Mother Teresa

Jesus Christ became Incarnate for one purpose, to make a way back to God that man might stand before Him as He was created to do, the friend and lover of God Himself.
Oswald Chambers

You can never truly enjoy Christmas until you can look up into the Father’s face and tell him you have received his Christmas gift.
John W Rice

When the song of the angels is stilled, When the star in the sky is gone, When the kings and princes are home, When the shepherds are back with their flock, The work of Christmas begins: To find the lost, To heal the broken, To feed the hungry, To release the prisoner, To rebuild the nations, To bring peace among others, To make music in the heart.
Howard Thurman

Christ was born in the first century, yet he belongs to all centuries. He was born a Jew, yet He belongs to all races. He was born in Bethlehem, yet He belongs to all countries.
George W. Truett

In a couple of days another Christmas will be over. Decorations will be taken down and the grind of daily life will resume. We must do something to remember that the message and meaning of Christmas does not cease when the celebration is over. Christmas is not really about a celebration, Christmas trees, and piles of gifts. Christmas, the coming of Christ, is about everyday life. God is with us and we need to do anything we can, to remember that fact the rest of the year.
Bruce Goettsche

The 12/23/13 Joy Jar

23 Dec

It is just over a day until Christmas and moi will be celebrating Christmas and reflecting upon the end of the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise. Aside from persistence, reflection, balance and of course, gratitude – the purpose of the exercise; moi learned quite a bit of values from reading the thoughts of a kaleidoscope of people and philosophies. Moi kept returning to her Christian faith and it’s aspirational values. The true message of Christmas is the Return of the Savior. The Return of the Savior is significant for Christians because each of us is a Child of God. Knowing that we belong to the Father gives each a peace that passes all understanding. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the fact moi is a Child of God.

Christianity is a love relationship between a child of god and his Maker through the Son Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit.
Adrian Rogers

Do you see that God’s sometimes painful dealings with you are but an extension of his fatherhood? Do you understand that his rebuke only affirms your glorious position as a child of god, who loves you enough to place his disciplining hand on your life?
Charles Stanley

Be encouraged, child of god. He loves you even in the midst of your pain. He loves you even when you don’t love Him. He loves you when you feel utterly alone. He loves you with an everlasting love. Your suffering can take many things away form you, your health, your happiness, your prosperity, your popularity, your friends, your career, even your family. But there’s one thing suffering can’t take away: it can’t take away the love of God.
Ray Pritchard

It is better to be the child of god than king of the whole world.
St Aloysius Gonzaga

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of god. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.
Maryanne Williamson

“God makes three requests of his children: Do the best you can, where you are, with what you have, now”
African-American Proverb

“An infinite God can give all of Himself to each of His children. He does not distribute Himself that each may have a part, but to each one He gives all of Himself as fully as if there were no others.”
A. W. Tozer

“Never allow anyone to rain on your parade and thus cast a pall of gloom and defeat on the entire day. Remember that no talent, no self-denial, no brains, no character, are required to set up in the fault-finding business. Nothing external can have any power over you unless you permit it. Your time is too precious to be sacrificed in wasted days combating the menial forces of hate, jealously, and envy. Guard your fragile life carefully. Only God can shape a flower, but any foolish child can pull it to pieces.”
Og Mandino

You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure about you. We were born to manifest the glory of God that is within us.
Marianne Williamson

The 12/22/13 Joy Jar

22 Dec

It is just a few days until Christmas and moi will be celebrating Christmas and reflecting upon the end of the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise. Aside from persistence, reflection, balance and of course, gratitude – the purpose of the exercise; moi learned quite a bit of values from reading the thoughts of a kaleidoscope of people and philosophies. Moi kept returning to her Christian faith and it’s aspirational values. The true message of Christmas is the Return of the Savior. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is the expectation of eternal life.

Saving faith is an immediate relation to Christ, accepting, receiving, resting upon Him alone, for justification, sanctification, and eternal life by virtue of God’s grace.
Charles Spurgeon

I believe that nothing happens apart from divine determination and decree. We shall never be able to escape from the doctrine of divine predestination – the doctrine that God has foreordained certain people unto eternal life.
Charles Spurgeon

The reward of eternal life requires effort.
Thomas S. Monson

Each heartfelt prayer, each Church meeting attended, each worthy friend, each righteous decision, each act of service perfomed all precede that goal of eternal life.
Thomas S. Monson

As a Christian, Christ died so that we will have eternal life in Him in Heaven. What it looks like doesn’t matter, what it smells like doesn’t matter, as long as Christ is there it will be Heaven to me.
T. D. Jakes

Eternal life and the invisible world are only to be sought in God. Only within Him do all spirits dwell. He is an abyss of individuality, the only infinite plenitude.
Karl Wilhelm Friedrich Schlegel

Besides the physical ordinance of baptism and the laying on of hands, one must be spiritually born again to gain exaltation and eternal life.
Ezra Taft Benson

The destination is a happy life, an accomplished life that doesn’t end with death but with eternal life.
Angelo Scola

The hope of eternal life is not to be taken up upon slight grounds. It is a subject to be settled between God and your own soul; settled for eternity. A supposed hope, and nothing more, will prove your ruin.
Ellen G. White

Among the many signs of a lively faith and hope we have in eternal life, one of the surest is not being overly sad at the death of those whom we dearly love in our Lord.
Saint Ignatius

Saving faith is an immediate relation to Christ, accepting, receiving, resting upon Him alone, for justification, sanctification, and eternal life by virtue of God’s grace.
Charles Spurgeon

“If you want to get warm you must stand near the fire: if you want to be wet you must get into the water. If you want joy, power, peace, eternal life, you must get close to, or even into, the thing that has them.”
C.S. Lewis

The 12/21/13 Joy Jar

21 Dec

It is just a few days until Christmas and moi will be celebrating Christmas and reflecting upon the end of the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise. Aside from persistence, reflection, balance and of course, gratitude – the purpose of the exercise; moi learned quite a bit of values from reading the thoughts of a kaleidoscope of people and philosophies. Moi kept returning to her Christian faith and it’s aspirational values. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is those aspirational Christian values.

Matt Perman wrote What Are Christian Values?

How about if we model for the world a more complete picture of Christian values, which would include things like this:
 Radical generosity. Just like Jesus, who did not merely tithe but gave everything he had (2 Corinthians 8:9).
 Love. Ditching the self-protective mindset and putting others before ourselves, making their good our aim in all things.
 Risk. Making the good of others a higher priority than our own safety, security, and comfort, and taking risks to bring benefit to them.
 Creativity. Christians are to be creative! And to be a boring Christian is a sin (that’s an implication of the term “salt” in Colossians 4:6).
 Excellence. Slack work is a form of vandalism (Proverbs 18:9). Christians are not to be clock-watchers in their work, but to do things well and with competence.
 Initiative. Taking ownership for making things better, rather than sitting around watching and complaining.
 Leadership. Instead of criticizing, leading and setting a good example.
 Humble authenticity.
 Global and multi-ethnic vision.
 Ambition. Not for our own comfort, but for the good of others.
These are all Christian values. But would the world know to name even one of these as Christian? We have a lot of work to do.
http://whatsbestnext.com/2012/08/what-are-christian-values/

“As long as you are proud you cannot know God. A proud man is always looking down on thing and people: and, of course, as long as you are looking down you cannot see something that is above you.”
C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

“I would rather make mistakes in kindness and compassion than work miracles in unkindness and hardness.”
Mother Teresa, A Gift for God: Prayers and Meditations

DISTURB US, O LORD

Sir Frances Drake: “Disturb us, Lord, when we are too well pleased with ourselves, when our dreams have come true because we have dreamed too little, when we arrive safely because we have sailed too close to the shore. Disturb us, Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the waters of life; having fallen in love with life, we have ceased to dream of eternity; and in our efforts to build a new earth, we have allowed our vision of the new Heaven to dim. Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly, to venture on wider seas where storms will show your mastery; where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars. We ask you to push back the horizons of our hopes; and to push into the future in strength, courage, hope, and love.”
(From a sermon by Glenn Durham, Christian Heroes, 8/3/2010)

“Remember!–It is Christianity to do good always–even to those who do evil to us. It is Christianity to love our neighbours as ourself, and to do to all men as we would have them do to us. It is Christianity to be gentle, merciful and forgiving, and to keep those qualities quiet in our own hearts, and never make a boast of them or of our prayers or of our love of God, but always to show that we love Him by humbly trying to do right in everything. If we do this, and remember the life and lessons of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and try to act up to them, we may confidently hope that God will forgive us our sins and mistakes, and enable us to live and die in peace.”
Charles Dickens

The 12/20/13 Joy Jar

20 Dec

It is just a few days until Christmas and moi will be celebrating Christmas and reflecting upon the end of the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise. Aside from persistence, reflection and of course, gratitude – the purpose of the exercise; moi learned that life should have balance. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is seeking balance in life.

“People who violate your boundaries are thieves. They steal time that doesn’t belong to them.”
Elizabeth Grace Saunders

“A ‘good job’ can be both practically attractive while still not good enough to devote your entire life to.”
Alain de Botton

Be moderate in order to taste the joys of life in abundance.
Epicurus

Fortunate, indeed, is the man who takes exactly the right measure of himself and holds a just balance between what he can acquire and what he can use.
Peter Latham

Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life – learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
Robert Fulgham

Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance and order and rhythm and harmony.
Thomas Merton

The best and safest thing is to keep a balance in your life, acknowledge the great powers around us and in us. If you can do that, and live that way, you are really a wise man.
Euripides

Wisdom is your perspective on life, your sense of balance, your understanding of how the various parts and principles apply and relate to each other.
Steven R. Covey

A well-developed sense of humor is the pole that adds balance to your steps as you walk the tightrope of life. William Arthur Ward

We come into this world head first and go out feet first; in between, it is all a matter of balance.
Paul Boese

So divinely is the world organized that every one of us, in our place and time, is in balance with everything else. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The key to keeping your balance is knowing when you’ve lost it.
Unknown

The 12/19/13 Joy Jar

20 Dec

It is just a few days until Christmas and moi will be celebrating Christmas and reflecting upon the end of the ‘Joy Jar’ exercise. Aside from persistence and of course, gratitude – the purpose of the exercise; moi learned to spend time in reflection. Today’s deposit into the ‘Joy Jar’ is slowing down to reflect.

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
Melody Beattie

“It is necessary … for a man to go away by himself … to sit on a rock … and ask, ‘Who am I, where have I been, and where am I going?”
Carl Sandburg

“It is when you lose sight of yourself, that you lose your way. To keep your truth in sight you must keep yourself in sight and the world to you should be a mirror to reflect to you your image; the world should be a mirror that you reflect upon.”
C. JoyBell C.

“Even if you think you’re doing well and have it all figured out, there is a voice you will always inevitably hear at some point which nags at you and says “but wait…” Don’t ever dismiss it, listen to what it has to say. Life will never be close enough to perfect, and listening to that voice means stepping outside of yourself and considering your own wrongdoings and flaws.”
Ashly Lorenzana

“We’re so concerned with the idea of what we ought to be that we fail to take into account the things that make us who we really are.”
Nenia Campbell, Locked and Loaded

By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.
Confucius

The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves, and not to twist them to fit our own image. Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them.
Thomas Merton

I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress, and grow brave by reflection. ‘Tis the business of little minds to shrink, but he whose heart is firm, and whose conscience approves his conduct, will pursue his principles unto death.
Thomas Paine

Part of every misery is, so to speak, the misery’s shadow or reflection: the fact that you don’t merely suffer but have to keep on thinking about the fact that you suffer. I not only live each endless day in grief, but live each day thinking about living each day in grief.
C. S. Lewis

Always vote for principle, though you may vote alone, and you may cherish the sweetest reflection that your vote is never lost.
John Quincy Adams

The real man smiles in trouble, gathers strength from distress, and grows brave by reflection.
Thomas Paine

Without reflection, we go blindly on our way, creating more unintended consequences, and failing to achieve anything useful.
Margaret J. Wheatley

It is not by muscle, speed, or physical dexterity that great things are achieved, but by reflection, force of character, and judgment.
Marcus Tullius Cicero

There are two distinct classes of what are called thoughts: those that we produce in ourselves by reflection and the act of thinking and those that bolt into the mind of their own accord.
Thomas Paine

Education begins the gentleman, but reading, good company and reflection must finish him.
John Locke

Follow effective action with quiet reflection. From the quiet reflection will come even more effective action.
Peter Drucker

A string of excited, fugitive, miscellaneous pleasures is not happiness; happiness resides in imaginative reflection and judgment, when the picture of one’s life, or of human life, as it truly has been or is, satisfies the will, and is gladly accepted.
George Santayana

The world is a looking glass and gives back to every man the reflection of his own face.
William Makepeace Thackeray