I’ve been carrying around this scrap of paper in my shirt pocket for more than six months. Scribbled on it are some random thoughts on the subject of joy. Here they are.
Perhaps you know someone who possesses an ever-present, unforced smile or kind demeanor. These attributes in our increasingly self-centered and angry society make these persons stand out in a crowd. They seem to have such an optimistic outlook on life, suggesting they know something we don’t, or possess something we don’t have. So what is it they do have?
You might just have to call it “joy.” Defining joy can be a tricky proposition. I’ve seen joy on display independent of a person’s happiness or circumstances. Joy seems to be the opposite of regret and feeds on “blessings” (those things most of us take for granted). That being said, contentment and joyappear together often. Those possessing joy seem intent on sharing it, and don’t shrink away from helping or serving others.
Where does joy come from? Some would say an inner peace creates an environment where joy can be discovered. Others say joy comes from hope placed in something, or someone. Who wouldn’t benefit from a peaceful life relieved of some stress.
Consider making 2020 a year to discover and embrace joy. Remember to encourage and support those who already possess it.
I’m guilty of not washing my car as often as I should. Maybe it’s because I regard vehicles as transportation and not a stylish reflection of who I am. In the northeastern United States we use salt on the roads in the winter. So, after ten to twelve years of ownership, my cars invariably show signs of rust. At this point it’s a little late in the game to be putting more effort into washing my car.
I want to be one of those people who invests their time and energy into imperishable things like relationships. I know this will require regular housecleaning to keep my heart from forming rust-bearing thoughts that can corrode the relationships I hold dear.
“Store your treasure in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not bread in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” Matthew 6:20-21 NLT
Beautiful flowers draw delicate butterflies. Colors of red, yellow, orange, pink and purple flowers matter to these creatures.
It is easy to be drawn to outward adornment. But outward adornment quickly fades.
According to the Apostle Peter, “Your beauty should not come from outward adornment…Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.” (I Peter 3:3-4)
A few years back I planted some minature hens and chickens plants as part of a larger group of flowers intended to spruce up the walkway leading to the front door to our house. Let’s face it, hens and chickens are unique plants…but are they really that exciting?? The flower spike rises almost 8 inches into the air.