I came across a past post while doing some updates to the blog. #tbt with a look at joy!
I have always thought of myself as a pretty happy person. I tend to enjoy life and the people in it for the most part. I love to laugh and find myself leaning towards the comedy genre for a Friday night movie!
I am deeply grateful for many things in my own life, but have often struggled with the word joy. What exactly is the true and deep emotional experience of joy and how do you know if you are experiencing happiness or joy? I always attempt to be authentic as I write and as fearful as it can be, I hope and pray my journey and experience towards whole health, in every dimension, can be relatable to some one reading this.
Dictionary. com defines joy as: the emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally good or satisfying; keen pleasure; elation.
As I break this definition apart bit by bit it helps my reflection: great delight: My little sister is 7 weeks from having my first niece. I think about going to the hospital and holding her, or giving her a bath. I think about rocking her to sleep to relieve my sister for a bit. Experiencing my first niece feels different from just being happy. It is a great delight.
Something exceptionally good is slowing down and spending a weekend day with my husband. Work is hard. Jobs can be stressful. It is a blessing to have jobs, the ability to work, and to have purpose and drive. However, life is moving fast and without being intentional we can miss the moments that matter. Something exceptionally good or satisfying was Sunday with him; church and sunshine; walking and talking.
Keen pleasure: elation is next. This is true: I love to move, and I love to be active, but I love to lead fitness because I love the people. When I walk into a class, a camp, or open my inbox to a “thank you for a great class” note I experience pleasure and pride in my students and friends. I love watching you beat your last timed miles, and hearing how our class creating a “Get Well Soon” card when you are ill-made your day! When one of us is missing there is a huge hole. I am elated to be apart of this community.
It’s easy to be happy when every everything is good.
It’s easy to laugh and go about when you know you should.
Smiles and kind gestures come when the sun shines bright.
But easily they go when the sunshine fades to night.
Keep some faith, keep some gull, and look to those you trust.
Don’t throw your hands up, don’t give up, when it all seems too much.
True joy and transformation is found in life’s tough seasons.
Don’t make excuses; cry for a moment; then search for purpose and for reason.
Pausing to explore, pausing to reflect, and pausing to share is indeed healthy. Are you experiencing joy in your life season?