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30 Days to Joy: A One-Month Creative Journal Diary – October 17, 2017
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About the Author
WaterBrook publishes books that seek to intensify and satisfy a reader’s elemental thirst for a deeper relationship with God.
Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Joy and happiness are often treated as synonyms, but joy is so much more than simply feeling happy. Happiness is the feeling you get when the guy in front of you pays for your coffee at the drive-thru or your boss lets you off work a bit early. Joy is something you feel deep in your soul.
Although the pages that follow will help you discover what joy means to you, take this book as seriously or as lightly as you need. While there are a few questions that will specifically direct you to write, draw, or doodle, feel free to engage with this journal however you prefer—maybe you’d rather include a photograph or a collage. There are no wrong answers or methods here—all that matters is that you’re choosing joy every day!
You’ll notice two pages at the end of this journal to write down songs that speak to you every day during your journey. Once you’ve written out your full playlist, please share it. Create it on Spotify and tweet it to @WaterBrookPress using #JoyfulPlaylist.
Are you ready to begin?
Happiness and other feelings are fleeting, but joy has an origin and a Creator.
Jamilyn R. Hull
How is joy different from happiness?
I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy.
Philippians 1:3-4, NIV
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As the title implies, 30 Days to Joy is unusual, as far as journals go, in that it’s meant to be completed in a month (although there’s nothing stopping you from taking as long as you want; while each exercise is labeled “Day 1,” “Day 2,” and so on, you could just as easily pencil in the date next to it, if you prefer). Each day features a different prompt that encourages you to reflect on the topic of “joy,” whatever that means to you.
Examples of this include:
* How is joy different from happiness?
* In pencil, write those things that most frequently steal your joy. Next, in a colorful pen or marker, write ways you can choose joy in those situations.
* If joy were a person in your life, who would it be and why?
* Write down and illustrate a quote or Bible verse that brings you joy.
As you can see, the exercises featured are a mix of secular and Christian prompts, with the majority skewed secular. However, most of the quotes peppered throughout the book are explicitly Christian, including a fair number of Bible verses. For this reason, I wouldn’t even assign the more general “New Age” or “spiritual” labels to this book; it’s really just meant for Christians, which is kind of shame, because we could all use more joy in these dark times, don’t you think?
Aesthetically, the book is pleasing to the eye; the interior color theme is red and white, making this a great Christmas gift. The cover has a rich, textured feel, which is undercut a bit by the large white sticker containing copy placed on the back cover.
The dimensions of the book are small, which normally bugs the heck out of me – but the book is thin enough that it’s easy to write in. There’s enough room to respond to each prompt, too.
Great idea, though the execution isn’t for everyone.
Most of us probably think joy and happiness are the same but there is a difference and this journal introduces you to the difference. If you love the arts such as writing, drawing, scrapbooking, etc, this journal is a place for you to make it yours. You can use your imagination in a variety of ways. You can express your inner thoughts on paper in any way you wish. The journal also has joyous messages, some through scripture. If you are on Spotify, there is a place in the book to make a list of songs that bring joy and peace to you. Create it on Spotify and tweet it to @WaterBrookPress using #JoyfulPlaylist.
It is not only a journal to express yourself but a place to write your inner most thoughts and where you want your life to go. An inspiration as such. You can truly make this your book with your thoughts and ideas. Be creative, be imaginative, be YOU! This isn't just a plain diary but a lovely book that you can keep in your home, take with you in your purse or briefcase and when you have an idea or thought you wish to express on paper, you can. You can also make notes as to something you wish to do or accomplish for later. You don't have to be a writer, a designer, photographer, just be YOU! This is your time, your place for your thoughts and ideas. If you know someone who might find joy in this type of journal, this one would make a perfect gift as a thank you, a gift for Christmas or birthdays. I feel it might bring joy and peace to anyone who is having a difficult time for one reason or another. Sometimes when we express what we are feeling on paper, it helps to bring a peace, a joy when otherwise you continue to struggle. This isn't a book with right or wrong ideas you can express. It's a book that can be simple or complex, whatever works for YOU!
I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books Review Program and voluntarily decided to review it.
The book is filled with quotes, scriptures and questions to get the reader to think about Joy in a way they might not have before. They start out asking the question How is joy different from Happiness? They give the reader two full pages to write down their thoughts and on the edges, give them flowers to color as they contemplate what to write. There’s a place to jot down joyful memories and quotes like this one by Robert Schuller, “Joy is not the absence of suffering. It is the presence of God,” to encourage you.
They also ask you about songs that bring you joy. They suggest you Create a play list on Spotify and tweet it to @WaterBrookPress using #JoyfulPlaylist to encourage yourself and others, they actually have two pages in the book devoted to creating your playlist.
I look forward to using this thought-provoking book and it’s prompts to get a deeper understanding of Joy and what that means from a heavenly perspective.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book from the BloggingForBooks site. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”
Nora St. Laurent
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