As brisk autumn days begin to give way to more wintry weather and storefronts are decked in seasonal trim, the celebratory atmosphere at Bethesda Gardens in Terre Haute tends to pick up pace. We know that the holidays bring different expectations for every person, but it's also true that Scripture calls us to celebrate the blessings God bestows upon us on a regular basis.
Whether you're gearing up for upcoming seasonal festivities or just struggling to embrace gratitude in your own assisted living apartment, here are five Bible verses to help you practice joy for the Lord.
So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 1 Corinthians 10:31
No matter what's going on in your life today — whether you're eating and drinking with friends, putting in time as a volunteer or simply spending quiet moments in your own apartment — Paul reminds us that it's important to do that activity for the glory of God. In a well-known passage in another epistle, Paul reminds his readers to do all work as if they are doing it for God. When you can recognize the blessings in each day and celebrate them, it helps you take each activity and step with God in mind.
Let us therefore celebrate the festival, not with the old leaven, the leaven of malice and evil, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. 1 Corinthians 5:8
Paul, still writing to the church at Corinth, reminds his readers that they should examine their motivations in everything, including celebration. Whether you're celebrating something seasonal, someone's birthday or just waking up feeling well in the morning, ensure that you're thanking God with truth and sincerity. And carry over those behaviors in your interactions with others.
These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. John 15:11
One of the things that Christians celebrate regularly is the story of the Gospels. The gift of salvation that Jesus brings to each believer is worth celebrating every day, and one way you can do that is by sharing it with others.
That doesn't mean you have to take up a portable pulpit and preach Christ throughout your assisted living community. But it does mean sharing Jesus in ways that are unique to you, showing him through your actions and daily life. When you do that, you gain a certain kind of joy that only comes from sharing Jesus with others.
This is the day that the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118: 24
A list of celebratory Bible verses wouldn't be complete without this favorite from the book of Psalms. This is a great memory verse for anyone new to saving Scripture away in heart and mind, and it's a wonderful reminder that God is in every day we live.
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Philippians 4:4
If a particular day seems hard to celebrate, here's another powerful memory verse from the New Testament. Even when you can't seem to celebrate anything else, you can find peace in the fact that God is with you always.