On an intellectual level, I know focusing on Jesus leads to great joy. I don’t mean transitory happiness. I mean a deep and consuming joy. It is the state in which God means us to live (Galatians 5:22-23; John 15:11; Romans 15:13;). Joy was a frequent topic of Paul in his various epistles to the churches. He knew a life focused on Christ would be a life well-lived, a life worthy of Christ.
Conversely, a life lived in search of enjoyment, satisfaction, and accomplishment robs us of the very joy God intends for us to have. So, if we know this on an intellectual level, why is it so difficult to practice? “Jesus every day” should be our mantra. Nothing we do matters except what we do for Him.
When I’m having a bad day, it is easy to determine why. Jesus has never disappointed me, so if I am experiencing disappointment, then I know my eyes are not on Him. Letting my mind focus on the surrounding circumstances is a sure recipe for discouragement. We live in a fallen world, so expecting pleasant surprises is altogether naïve. Satan is the ruler of this world (Luke 4:6; John 14:30; John 12:31), so what kind of results would you expect? Death, disease, violence, corruption, immorality, confusion, apathy, and despair are what we should expect and exactly what we get from the evil one. When we try to live by the world’s rules, we cannot help but feel lost and alone, no matter how much braggadocio we put on display.
In a recent time of prayer, I was crying out for the Spirit to give me the outlook of Jesus every day. When I wake, I want to think of Jesus. In my interactions with others, I want to act like Jesus. In everything I think, say, and do, I want it to be done with a focus on and a devotion to Jesus. The mystery is the more I think of Jesus, the better my life becomes. Not because He blesses me with health, wealth, or comfort, but because I am living life as He created me to live it. Our sole purpose is to glorify Him. God did not create us to get as much as we can from this world, but to give as much of Christ as we can to the world. He alone is worthy of our attention and our lives.
If we can learn to live with the mindset of “Jesus every day”, we will never be the same. This life is not about us. It is about bringing glory to God and showing His beauty to others. Life is about serving, not being served. It’s about giving, not getting. When we allow our focus to settle on ourselves, we will live in a way incongruent with how we were designed. Choosing to focus instead on Jesus every day will open your eyes to a life you have never known. A deep joy, a steady calm, and an unstoppable hope will be the calling cards of your life. Live for Jesus every day. Be the person He created you to be. Then you will find joy like you have never known.