Call for Submissions
WINTER 2022 | REJOICE
SUBMISSION DEADLINE IS JULY 31ST
The Joyful Life inspires women
to pursue joy and discover beauty in their daily lives
by grounding their hearts in Christ,
leading them to live and love well
—for the purpose of glorifying God.
THE REJOICE ISSUE WILL BE OUR FINAL PRINT ISSUE—so we want to wholeheartedly encourage our writers to submit their very best work as we seek to give God glory by closing this chapter (our print publication) with excellence. Read about this difficult decision and the future of The Joyful Life.
The Winter Issue will urge readers to keep joy at the forefront of their hearts and homes—even in the midst of grief or hard seasons. This issue will be a reminder of the One in whom true and abiding joy is found, and the words shared within these pages will encourage you to intentionally carve out time for worship, reflection, and rest with Him.
We’ll share fun ideas for spending time with your kids and your spouse, prompting you toward those sweet joyous moments of togetherness. We’ll talk about creative ways to gather with your friends and neighbors during this season, and we will provide some practical ideas for everyday discipleship with your kids.
This winter quarter, we want to remind you of the privilege it is to rejoice with others and the true gift it is to celebrate in Christ. We’ll seek to come alongside you in those harder moments—where joy does not come easy—acknowledge grief, and lift your gaze to the truth and presence of Christ amid hardship, leading us to true joy.
We pray this Winter Issue, REJOICE, would prompt you to deeper worship of God—that it will lead you to celebrate the joyous moments in your heart and your home this season, and walk alongside you as the Lord restores unto you the joy of your salvation (Psalm 51:12).
The Joyful Life Editorial Team
WRITER GUIDELINES | Please download and familiarize yourself with our Writer Guidelines and submission and editorial processes prior to submitting.
THE FOLLOWING TOPICS ARE NOT NECESSARILY MEANT TO BE STRICTLY ADHERED TO,
BUT RATHER A STARTING POINT FOR YOU TO GLEAN IDEAS AND INSPIRATION.
Home — PRACTICAL LIVING AND CULTIVATING LIFESTYLE
HOW TO HOST A ‘FAVORITE THINGS’ GIFT EXCHANGE | 800-1200 words
BRIEF | Steps and details for easily incorporating this fun tradition into your holiday festivities.
STARTING A MOM AND CHILD BOOK CLUB | 1200-1800 words
BRIEF | How to nurture your child’s (and maybe even your own) love for reading by establishing a family book club. Share reasons why this is beneficial for both moms and kids as well as practical application for starting, hosting, and maintaining enthusiasm within the group.
NEW YEAR’S EVE FUN WITH KIDS | 800-1200 words
BRIEF | Countdown activities, games, food, crafts, tips, or inspiration for drawing kiddos into the celebration as we usher in a new year.
Heart & Home — HEART-FOCUSED WITH PRACTICAL APPLICATION
INTENTIONAL ADVENT | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | In the frenzy of the Christmas season, how can we intentionally carve out time for worship, reflection, and rest? In the midst of holiday prep and hosting, the joy of the season can be elusive as we fight long to-do lists, stress, anxiety, and overwhelm. As moms (the ones who typically set the thermostat of our household), how do we keep genuine joy at the forefront and point our families to what (and Who) truly matters? (Luke 10:41).
SPIRITUAL KEYSTONE HABITS | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | Essentially, Keystone Habits are base-level habits that, when established, have a ripple effect on several areas of life and create momentum for the development of other habits. The notion of Keystone Habits originated with Charles Duhigg in his book, “The Power of Habit”. We would love to see a piece that takes this base idea and applies it specifically to spiritual keystone habits and how establishing them will have a ripple effect on your overall spiritual health, will impact your family and relationships, and will benefit other key areas of your life. Keystone habits help us to live more intentionally and prioritize what truly matters. We would love to see this piece approached from both a heart-level perspective as well as include specific application of particular habits to consider developing.
PLANNING A YEAR OF ROMANCE | 1200-1800 words
BRIEF | Creating a year’s worth of date ideas to enjoy with your spouse all year long. This could be written DIY style with ideas to incorporate as well as creative ways to share the date ideas with your spouse or in a more traditional writing style—focusing on the value of planning for intentional romance and date nights with practical ideas as a sidebar.
TAKING A RETREAT TO RESET WITH YOUR SPOUSE | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | Ideas to get away, questions to ask one another, how to reflect on your past year and think forward for the next together, writing a family culture mission statement, assessing if your actions and activities are promoting your family culture.
TEACHING KIDS TO BE IN THE WORLD BUT NOT OF THE WORLD | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | Being proactive in our parenting to help shape our children’s character to face the influences of the world with a godly worldview. Proactive vs reactive parenting. Assessing the major areas of influence in our children’s lives and intentionally counting the cost of what we allow to influence them.
Heart — SPIRITUAL GROWTH AND NURTURING FAITH
REJOICING AMID SEASONS OF SUFFERING AND LAMENT | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | How do we live out Psalm 34 (I will praise the Lord at ALL times) in the midst of grief or hard seasons? How can our lamenting be a praise offering back to Him? Rejoicing in the midst of spiritual darkness. What about the times in life when there seems nothing to find joy in? Are we expected to just drum up fake feelings of happiness? How does Christ meet us in our hardship, acknowledge our grief, and then lead us to true joy, no matter what we are walking through?
FELLOWSHIP WITH THE COMMUNITY OF CHRIST | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | How the joy of our salvation is compounded and exponentially grows when we celebrate Christ with our fellow brothers and sisters. The beauty of the church—let us rejoice that He has given us each other, and let our investment in the body of Christ lead us to rejoice in Him more and more! Why fellowship with other believers is vital to growth and the many ways that this gift from God is a gift to us in our walk.
RUNNING FROM A GOD OF LOVE | 1800-2400 words
BRIEF | A look at the effects of sin on a believer—separation of spirit and how we continue in the futile practice of trying to hide our sin in darkness rather than running toward love to be redeemed from it. This could either be a personal story or a heartfelt teaching piece.
REJOICING WITH OTHERS | 1200-1800 words
BRIEF | In the midst of a culture that so often pits us against one another, how can we be women who intentionally support and celebrate each other’s joys, triumphs, and everyday successes? (Romans 12:15)
Important! — PLEASE READ BEFORE SUBMITTING
BLOG SUBMISSIONS | We are no longer accepting outside submissions for blog pieces through our quarterly call for submissions. Our blog articles are written exclusively by our Blog Contributor Team with the exception of 12 outside pieces selected per year during our bi-annual open call for blog submissions. If you are interested in submitting to our call for blog submissions during the open window or if you are interested in being considered for our Blog Contributor Team when applications open, please sign up for our Writer Email List to be notified.
ARTICLE TITLES | Please do NOT include the name of the issue theme in the title of your piece and please be judicious in your use of the word throughout your writing. Each quarter we find that the issue theme is so heavily incorporated into titles and pieces that it begins to feel forced and contrived. Our themes are chosen based on the overall heart of the issue in its entirety and not based on a desire to have each piece overtly reflect the theme.
TOPIC CONSIDERATIONS | We are always eager to receive submissions that are Spirit-driven, timely, and relevant. If you have an idea for a topic that fits well within the scope of the categories listed or is seasonal in nature but not specifically mentioned in our submission call, please feel free to submit it under the ‘OTHER’ category for either print or blog. We welcome your creative ideas.
POINT OF VIEW | It is our strong preference that submissions be written in the first person whenever possible and appropriate to the topic.
WHAT WE LOOK FOR IN A SUBMISSION | As always—our encouragement to all of our writers is to write from a place of authenticity, vulnerability, and sisterhood with a ‘me too’ heart for sharing our stories for the purpose of building one another up. Our sincere hope is that the words we share with our readers will serve as a reminder that Jesus is our ultimate hope and our only source of authentic joy throughout every area of our lives.
We are so happy to be working alongside you to bring the joy found in Jesus into the hearts and homes of many women.