Mechanics of Joy

Today I’d like to take something natural and beautiful…and break it all the way down into tiny pieces.  I love doing that stuff.  Just ask my husband.

I want to talk about…joy.

There are different kinds of joy, aren’t there?  I have been known to weep over a perfectly cooked piece of salmon with a side of garlic mashed potatoes and still-crisp asparagus with just a hint of lemon.   And I have also clapped enthusiastically for a pair of cute red shoes.

But I want to get under the hood of the car of deep and residing joy.

Our deep joy determines what motivates us.  Humans are wired to seek out pleasure because…you know, pleasure.  Our joy also determines what we get rattled by.  Just drop in unexpectedly with your kids each carrying a bag of warm M&Ms to someone’s house whose deep joy is control and order and watch their face.

WHAT is joy?

I am an unrepentant word nerd and I want to start here.

joy (noun): emotion of great delight or happiness caused by something exceptionally good or satisfying; keen pleasure

Now I want to add a layer of word nerdiness because I believe this is the part I tend to miss.

deep (adjective): extending far down from the top or surface

Being deep requires more than a glance.  It is an investment in time.  I can say all day my joy is _______________ .   But the fact remains that whatever I dedicate myself to is where my roots will grow no matter what I am saying with my mouth.  Time cultivates an intimate knowledge of anything or anyone.  So one way to discover where my true joy is might be to ask myself: where am I investing my time? (Um.  Ouch.  I did not know I was going to write that).

WHERE is your delight hidden?

The deepest our joy can ever go is determined by the source.  For example, if our main thing is…stuff…our boats get ROCKED when our stuff gets messed with. What if our biggest source of joy is our career?  Or our bodies?  Or another person?  There is lots of fallout just hanging by these tenuous threads.  I believe we need to be honest about the true source of our joy and not just what we want others to think it is.  Aren’t there are plenty of us Christians claiming God as a source of joy still walking around like we just swallowed a spoonful of poo?  I’m just saying.

HOW do we maintain focus on our joy?

My joy gets skewed.  I am blinded by some things listed above, and many more I have not, multiple times a day.  My brother, Adam, has a business fixing and calibrating tools.  The more the tools are used and worn down, the more they get just a little bit off.  A little bit off day after day equals a whole lot of off.  Until he comes to adjust them and they are brought back up to the industry standard of accuracy.  My joy is constantly being worn and rubbed by shiny things in the world that catch my eye.

For me, my joy resides in the WHO.  And when my eyes are adjusted, sometimes a thousand times a day, it cannot be taken from me by anything in this world.

mechanics

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1 COMMENT

  1. Jill Tucker | 15th Feb 14

    Okay first of all I LOVE THAT PICTURE OF YOU! WHEN WAS THAT TAKEN AND HOW IS YOUR HAIR SO PERFECTLY BLOWN? And your shoulders look so strong, like you will be able to uphold anything life throws.

    As you know I posted on FB today about an innocent, perfect sledding hill joy-day. What a gift from God to have all of the adults laughing and of course all of the kids laughing/screaming down the hills.

    Swallowing poo, or being around those who enjoy chewing poo can taint a day. Heehee I wrote taint. It’s true though, but I wont’ let them take that from me.

    I turn one year older this year, which means that I have less time for the poo-chewers, and more hope for JOY-seekers.

    I HEART YOU! Hope you have a wonderful Valentine’s weekend. If you get a chance, read Ann V’s x-rated blog about saggy beds if you haven’t already. Good non-poo-chewing stuff.

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