Monday’s Musings #261 & Rise and Get the Worm

Rise and Get the Worm & Monday's Musings #261 | What Joy Is Mine

They say “the early bird gets the worm.” In other words, there is more success to be had by rising early. I am a firm believer in this fact. I used to be a night owl and in some ways I still am. However, I began seeing that I was missing out on precious hours that I could be doing more productive things than sleeping. So, I started to retrain my mind and body to rise early and not forfeit those morning hours.

Now there are good reasons why rising early is beneficial.

1. An earlier bed time. To rise early, we must make sure we are in bed early. This doesn’t mean we have to be in bed right after dinner, unless one requires 10 hours of sleep, which is not recommended. Yet we need to allow ourselves to get at least 7-8 hours of rest so that getting up early can be feasible. Plus, 7-8 hours of sleep is good for the mind and body.

2. The mind is clearer. Our minds are clearer because we give ourselves time to prepare for the day. In rising early, we have more time to get focused on the day’s agenda and begin tackling our to-do list in a orderly and more intentional way.

3. Skip the rushing. An early morning helps avoid rushing around. A late morning usually leads to us rushing to get our things done, which then leads to not accomplishing all of our tasks. Truly, no one likes to be rushing so an early morning puts an end to that.

4. Time for ourselves. An early morning opens up time for ourselves. This could be when we read and study our bible, enjoy a cup of tea or coffee, exercise, journal or get in a nice shower. All done before the family awakes or we begin our day’s tasks.

5. Get things done early. When we start early, we finish early. It is a nice treat to have our agenda done in a timely fashion and early leaving us more free time to do other things we may enjoy more. For me, I like having the afternoon and evening for projects I want to tackle and more family time.

6. Enjoy the quiet of the day. Early mornings bring quiet moments. This is the time of the day where I, personally, get prayer in and just relish in the quiet of the day. I haven’t started my agenda yet and I love the quiet time to wake up and get focused.

So there it is. Early morning risers get the worm. They have a greater chance of success in accomplishing their day’s agenda. And let me be clear on this, early mornings don’t necessarily mean 4 a.m. wake up calls. My early morning is 7 a.m. with a 7-8 hour sleep. Find what works for you and put it into action.

Let me leave you with this example: Jesus was the perfect example of rising early in Mark 1:35, “And rising very early in the morning, while it was still dark, he departed and went out to a desolate place, and there he prayed.” Jesus knew the importance of early quiet time with God to begin the day.

Another week is upon us and April is moving right along. What will you share today?

Monday's Musings #261 | What Joy Is Mine

Monday’s Musings Purpose:

To have others share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.)

Monday’s Musings Must Dos:

1. Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo in the side bar.

2. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Know that sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed.

3. It would be so awesome if you could encourage another by visiting their post and leaving a kind comment. Builds community, too. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

 

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How I Journal When I Study the Word

How I Journal When I Study the Word | What Joy Is Mine

Journaling the Bible has really taken off. People don’t just highlight verses in their bible now they draw pictures and create art in them, too. Okay…call me old fashioned but I can’t bring myself to color in my bible. I do underline verses with pencil and that’s it. However, I do like the idea of journaling what I study and learn. So, let me share with you what I do.

How I Journal When I Study the Word | What Joy Is Mine

My supplies include a regular notebook, a bag with a few different pens, markers and colored pencils, my Bible, Matthew Henry Commentary and Blue Letter Bible (an online bible help). The BLB help I pull up on my phone so I have it handy.

I usually do my study in my reading corner. It’s also the space where I pray as well. It’s a quiet corner with a chaise chair in our home. Perfect for laying out all my stuff while I study.

How I Journal When I Study the Word | What Joy Is Mine

Now my journaling is done in this way:

~ I pray for wisdom and understanding and that God blesses my time in His Word. Always I seek Him first.

~ Next, I read the chapter I’m in. At the moment I am working through the book of Acts. Specifically, I’m in chapter 19 so I read the entire chapter before writing down anything.

~ After reading through the chapter, I break down the chapter. Sometimes, it’s verse by verse and other times it’s a section as a whole. Really depends on what is happening in the chapter and what the Lord is saying.

~ When I know what I am focusing on, I use my Matthew Henry Commentary to help dig deeper into the section. I also break down specific words that stand out to me and look up definitions. I can find even more info in the Blue Letter Bible from other commentaries, definitions from Vine’s Expository & Strong’s Concordance, biblical usage of words/phrases, and cross references. Truly, how much I dig in and learn changes each time I sit to study.

~ Lastly, I use one color ink pen for all my personal observations, applications and prayer. Pink is that color. No matter what other colors I use, pink signifies my lessons learned and closing prayer which I write down. Choosing a consistent color throughout my notebook helps me find those teachings easily when I look back.

My Bible study journaling does take time. My aim is to spend at least thirty minutes in my study yet sometimes I go over that. It just depends. The benefit of journaling this way is I can write down as much as I desire since I am journaling in a notebook and not my Bible. Let me share a few more pages with you from my journaling notebooks.

How I Journal When I Study the Word | What Joy Is Mine

Well, that’s how I journal when I study the Word of God. How do you dig in and study the Word?

 

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Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
This post might contain affiliates. Read our disclosure.
Thank you for supporting this site and our family.
You might find me sharing at these link ups during the week. 

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you.

Monday’s Musings #211 & Paying Off Debt

Monday's Musings #211 & Paying Off Debt | What Joy Is Mine

Debt. Most of us have it. In our day and time, its so easy to charge for things. But when we don’t pay it off at the end of the month, we incur interest charges on top of what we charged. This puts us more in debt and paying it off becomes more of a challenge. Credit cards are a snare of huge proportions. They require extreme discipline or don’t have them at all.

Last year we began our journey to be debt free. We are still on this journey and seeing success come from our hard work. Paying off debt takes prayer, time, discipline and determination. And we are determined!! So, how are we doing? Last year alone we paid off three small debts. Each time I put down the words “paid off” in our money ledger, I knew we were headed in the right direction. So, how are we doing it?

Well, we are paying off one debt at a time then moving onto the next one. We started with the smallest debt we had. We paid double the  monthly minimum and some months triple. We paid it off in three months. We took that amount we paid for that debt and applied it to the minimum of the next largest debt. For example, if your minimum doubled is $50, you add that amount to the monthly minimum of the next larger bill. Let’s say that one is $25 a month. Now you would pay $75 on that one, paying triple the monthly minimum. When that debt is paid, you would apply that $75 towards the next largest debt and on. Does that make sense?

You continue this until you have paid off your biggest debt. It is very doable and there is success in this way of paying off debt. Now, one important thing to remember is do not incur more debt as you begin seeing debt paid off. It’s so easy to see your debt dwindling and begin charging or taking out loans again. Put the brakes on! Try to pay cash. If you don’t have the money, either don’t buy it or begin saving for it.

There’s one more important thing to mention here. As you are making your way to paying off your debt, begin a savings agenda. Set aside $10 or $20 or more if you can. Your goal is to have at least $800 or more in your savings. Trust me, you will be glad you did. When emergencies come up, you will have cash to pay with and not have to lean on your credit card or a loan.

Don’t forget to pray and seek guidance from the Lord. He will lead you in the way you should go. He did for us.

How are you working to be debt free? And if you are debt free, please share how you did it. My friend, Judith, has been doing a whole series on this specific topic. You can check that out HERE. Another way we have been able to put more funds towards our debt is to be more frugal. I share some ideas HERE.

Well, April is moving right along and this weekend we decided to expand our garden to grow even more delicious foods. I can’t wait to start planting. I also can’t wait to see what you all will share this week. So grateful to have you visit.

UPDATE: My nephew-in-law came home last Monday but his stay was short lived. He ended up back in the ICU for a serious condition. Please cover him in prayer for complete healing and comfort and for his family as they adjust to this setback. Thank you.

Monday's Musings #211 & Paying Off Debt | What Joy Is Mine

Monday’s Musings Purpose: I would LOVE! to have you share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.) Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo below. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Oh, and sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

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Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
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Thank you for supporting this site and our family.

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source


Monday’s Musings #203 & Taking Notes In Church

Monday's Musings #203 & Taking Notes In Church | What Joy Is Mine

It is my opinion that it’s worth the effort to take notes in church when listening to the pastor preach and teach. I am a note taker and I find that it is blesses me in more ways than one.

First, I have it on paper what was taught. Which means I can go back to it at any time for review and encouragement. I do revisit my notes from time to time.

Second, I pay better attention if I’m taking notes on the sermon being given. Not only am I saving what I’m hearing but I am less distracted when writing. I’m more focused on what’s being taught.

Thirdly, taking notes in church really nails it to the walls of my heart. There is something about writing it down that helps me grasp what is being taught and remember it later.

When taking notes, it doesn’t have to be fancy or long sentences. It’s just important to get the gist of what is being taught down. Write down key words with brief definitions, short but to the point sentences and verse references. I don’t usually have time to write down whole verses so scripture references are easier. Plus, they make you look them up in your Bible later.

In addition, drawings are good, too. I’m not a great artist but I can draw stick people or the cross, for example. It’s not for others to see anyways so add drawings where you can if you choose.

So, do you take notes in church? How does it benefit you?

Last week we had some wonderful posts shared. I hope you were able to visit a couple and encourage a fellow blogger. What have you to share this week? I’m so glad you are stopping by.

Monday's Musings | What Joy Is Mine

 Monday’s Musings Purpose: I would LOVE! to have you share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.) Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo below. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Oh, and sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

 What Joy Is Mine Blog

Get connected!! 
Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
This post might contain affiliates. Read our disclosure.
Thank you for supporting this site and our family.

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source.


11 Ways To Live Without JOY

 11 Ways To Live Without Joy | What Joy ISsMine

I believe that our point of view can make a difference in how we feel, approach situations and see things. We can choose to see the cup half full or half empty. Joy is an option given to us but sometimes we don’t choose it. Let me share with you 11 ways we can choose to live without joy in our day.

1. Skip our quiet time. When I say skip, I mean don’t make time for it. Even five minutes in the Word can change our outlook at anytime and fill us with JOY.

2. Neglect prayer. The Lord wants us to come to him and communicate whatever is on our heart. There is JOY in knowing we have placed all in the hands of God, trusting him with all we’ve spoken to him, and knowing He will answer according to his perfect will and timing.

3. Don’t tidy our home. I don’t know about you but when I have stuff laying around, cluttering my home, it does not encourage JOY in my heart. It does the opposite. However, just putting things in their place will make a huge difference in our attitude.

4. Don’t have a daily plan. This is huge for me. A daily agenda of what I need and want to get done makes things go more smoothly promoting a more JOY-filled approach to my day. Even if its a small list of 3-5 things you want to accomplish, have a plan for your day, and do at least 1 or 2 things on your list if not all of them.

5. Sleep in. Okay…some of you may say, “I’m not a morning person.” I get it. So, set the time you want to wake up and get up. Its so true that when we sleep later than our designated wake up time, we are running around trying to catch up all day. It can be stressful and when stress steps in, we are not the most pleasant person to be around.

6. Don’t exercise. Staying physically healthy is a huge JOY intensifier. Not only does it increase your endorphins which make you feel good, it’s good for your body. When we take care of ourselves, we feel better about ourselves plus we are more able to tend to our home and loved ones. Go for a walk, run, or do something at home. Just get moving!

7. Don’t have a before bedtime routine. To have a good start to our morning, there ought to be a before bedtime routine in place. This routine will end our day on a JOY-full note. No stress allowed before we close our eyes.

8. Disregard a morning routine. Having a morning routine in place will give us the start we need to have a more successful day. A more successful day will encourage a more JOY-filled day and we will be ready to handle what our day will hold.

9. Skip romancing your marriage. You love your husband? Then tell him, show him and remind him all the ways you can. Our marriages must have weeds pulled (the uglies dealt with in love) and be watered with much TLC to be healthy and grow stronger. There is JOY in a loving, god-fearing marriage.

10. Stay real busy. Yes, keep yourself so tied into many things and much will suffer. It’s fine to have an agenda but don’t over do it. There is a point where we can run ourselves ragged and be miserable because of it. Plan well and know when to say “no.” There is JOY in that!

11. Do not hide the Word in your heart. There is something amazing that happens when God’s word is hidden in our heart. It’s like a peaceful covering to our life and all it holds. We can’t be miserable when we have the JOY of the Word hiding in our heart to be reflected on at any time and for any need.

So the question is, what choice are we going to make? Being happy, satisfied and JOY-filled can be accomplished if we make the right decisions that will bring it about. Read the Bible, memorize the Word, romance our husband, treasure our children, tend to our home, keep a balanced schedule and praying faithfully will do wonders to keep us from being miserable and instead lead us to live JOY-fully no matter what comes our way.

How will you start today?

What Joy Is Mine

Get connected!! 
Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
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**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. 
Image courtesy of [Aduldej] at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
 
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