The Mystery of Joy - J
in the A-Z of Mystery Journal

Joy is one of those things that makes one’s heart sing. The mystery of joy, at least for me, lies in the difference between joy and happiness. They are similar and can be expressed in similar ways, but joy goes deeper. Joy is an emotion of delight and gladness not dependent on circumstances. It expresses gratitude for beautiful experiences and is hopeful for something wonderful.

“Joy is the echo of God’s life within us.”
– Columba

When thinking about how I was going to present the word JOY, bubbles came to mind with curvy bouncy lines for the letters. Multi-colored bright bubbles dance on the golden yellow light.

“Without kindness there can be no true joy.”

– Thomas Carlye

“Joy is the Holy fire that keeps our purpose warm and our intelligence aglow.”

Helen Keller

“The LORD is my strength and shield.
I trust Him with all my heart.
He helps me, and
my heart is filled with joy.
I burst out in songs of thanksgiving.”

Psalm 28:7 NLT

“The joy of the LORD is my strength.”
– Nehemiah 8:10

“For happiness one needs security,
but joy can spring like a flower
even from the cliffs of despair.”

– Ann Morrow Lindbergh

“You make known to me the path of life;
in your Presence there is fullness of Joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forever more.”

– Psalm 16:11 ESV

A-Z of Mystery Posts

A-Z Word of the Year Challenge Journal Pages

This post shows my finished journal pages of the A-Z Word of the Year Challenge & links including A-Z of my Mystery and applying it to a word of the year.

Reaching the Zenith with Zeal – A-Z Word Challenge

Moving toward a zenith, the highest point in life, with passion and zeal sounds fulfilling and to me. I would like to live with such purposeful intention.

Yearning and saying Yes – Y in A-Z Word Challenge

What I yearn for I tend to say ‘yes’ to. That is why it is so important to nurture my heart, be aware of what or who I give my heart to, what I focus on, and even what I see and hear.

The Treasure of X in the A-Z Word Challenge

The mysterious treasure and paradox of the letter ‘X’ in the A-Z of Mystery journal. Scripture and questions to consider in this journey of life.

Vision – Valor – Victory ~ V in A-Z Word of the Year Challenge

V in the A-Z Word of the Year Challenge I was almost asleep one night recently when a phrase floated across my mind and I knew it spoke truth and asked to be written down. So I pulled myself out of bed and went to my journal to write: “Vision with Valor lead to Victory.” This got me thinking of what this means to me personally. I went to the first A-Z journal I did with Bernice Hopper’s challenge back in 2013. Here is my V for Vision for that: Vision is a key word for me right now, and… Read More

Living in Unity – U in A-Z Challenge

We are bound together in a common life. Seeking unity with one another is a worthwhile pursuit. “How wonderful it is…to live together in harmony.

Living Time Now – T in A-Z Challenge

“We live in the past of the future,” I heard Jonathan Cahn say. So I am choosing to make today count like a time traveler! It’s like I am actually able to go back in time and change the trajectory of my future. If I were looking back from tomorrow or next year, that is exactly what coming back to this moment would be like.

Developing a Rhythm for Life – R in A-Z Challenge

Seeking to establish a fulfilling rhythm of daily life, working from rest and resting from work in a fulfilling way. Every living thing has a rhythm. “R” for Rhythm in the A-Z of Mystery Word of the Year Challenge.

Being Quiet to Hear – Q in A-Z Challenge

Getting quiet is important in order to hear and discern what to do. Listening prayer is a way to do that. Suggested questions & art reflections on Q-Quiet in the A-Z Challenge included

Living with Paradox – P in A-Z Word Challenge

Paradox is holding two opposites as true at the same time. We live in paradoxical times that have polarized relationships and our nation. We tend to paint other people with harsh, broad brush strokes of black or white. Living with paradox requires empathy and invites reconciliation, seeking to understand a viewpoint opposite of our own.

Stencils Used in this Post:

You may notice I used a music stencil mask in this post. It is one of three music stencils I’ve designed to be released the end of October 2018 by StencilGirl® Products. I apologize for any inconvenience to you or StencilGirl® Products. After I used them on this journal and  the “J” pages in my A-Z of Me journal I realized I needed to post these pages before the release of the stencils. I will be posting more inspirational pages with the new stencils the end of October when they are released. I guess I got too excited about it and have been using it on just about everything these days. Thank you for your patience. 

Bible Journaling with Stencils & More E-Course

At the end of May 2018 a new Bible Journaling lesson was added to the Bible Journaling with Stencils & More E-course featuring the Woman at the Well – John 4, including video demo with insights on the meaning of the text, and Bible Journaling margin image PDF.

Links to Posts about Word-of-the-Year & Everyday Journaling:

Making an everyday, calendar journal in a Leuchtturm1917 or Moleskine journal:

Ideas for scroll and banner headings for theme pages in an everyday journal:

About exploring a word of the year:

A surprise that led to an animal of the year:

“Why Journal? The Benefits of Journaling” . In addition to the post contents, check out the comments. People have contributed great reasons for journal keeping.

If you are seeking a Word for the year, you may find inspiration in the post “Listening for My Word of the Year.”

Visit my Pinterest Board:

Bible Journaling often is another facet of exploring a word or theme. In the Bible Journaling with Stencils & More e-course, I walk through how I Bible journal, the process of study and techniques. To find out more information check out:

Join Our Inspirational Facebook Group

Bernice Hopper, and Mary Brack, and I share insights through blog posts for keeping an Everyday Calendar Journal. We will be using the journal to record events, experiences and relationships; to explore our word’s meaning in visual and fun ways. If you would like to connect with others in creative way about organizing your word, your ideas, thoughts, prayers, events, or your projects all in one place, you are invited to join our Facebook group: Everyday Journals ~ Living Your Word of the Year.
URL for Facebook group:

URLs for Instagram: #livingyourword2018 & #everydayjournals2018




Valerie: (this one :-))

1 Comment

  1. Oh Valerie, your A-Z journal is already such an amazing Spirit-inspired piece of work, I can’t say enough about it, there are no adequate words! I LOVE the vibrant, bright colors in your JOY pages – they are indeed joyful!!! Bless you on your continuing journey. I am so blessed to be able to be a watcher in the wings…

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