This one promises to be short. . . the sweet part will be in the eye of the beholder.
The source of joy for each of us is no doubt as unique as our fingerprints or DNA. Just among our quiver, the variance is so comical.
For JP, it is a four-letter word: F-o-o-d. The boy loves to eat. Summon up one of his favorites and you’ve got a truly happy boy.
For Gabe, it is someone that will sit and talk endlessly to him (on an adult level only, please) about the world of sports. He will break down the weekend’s college or NFL football games, talk about World Series pitching match-ups, or discuss Kentucky’s recruiting classes for the next four years.
For Kara, it is the simple things. I have often come out of a simple run to the store for one or two items and grab an impulse item that brings her joy. Last year, it was lip balm in an emoji container. After Kane ate the first batch, she has refilled it a few times by melting Carmex and pouring it in there. Last week, it was a pen with a pineapple top whose eyes bug out when you squeeze it. Bingo – instant bliss.
Kane had few things that brought him more joy than a ride on a tractor. It could be the electric one he had at home, a toy tractor no child would fit on (including him), or riding with his Grandaddy or Pop on a real one. His small attention span suddenly knew no boundaries once he was on a ride.
If I asked for responses on what brings you joy, no doubt your list would include your children, worship experiences, your spouse, friends, hobbies, and things I wouldn’t even think of.
Isn’t it great that God has created each of us in such a way that we find ourselves satisfied and filled with joy over different things?
But, some of y’all. .
If I were a betting man, I would place a good-sized monetary wager that some of you are only joyful in the midst of conflict, being critical, or stuck directly in the middle of something negative. I have constructed that belief from a number of different avenues, chief among them the constant evidence on display on social media.
Topics can range from college football coaches, your child’s elementary school teacher’s latest project assignment, the flag football coach’s offensive play calling, a politician’s vacation plans, the latest school board meeting, the song selection at church last Sunday, the list goes on. . and on. . .and on.
Connecting with people from high school and college, or former students and players, keep me from deleting accounts; which would allow me to keep a higher opinion of some of you along the way.
But, it would help greatly if some of y’all could find something different to bring you joy than stirring the pot over nonsense. If nothing else, the last 8-9 weeks in our lives have reminded us of just how much nonsense there is that demands our attention. I’d give you all of it for one more hug from a 3-year old.
In Nehemiah, God reminds us that the Joy of the LORD is our strength. Better than any tractor ride or pineapple pen, I promise.
“For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and JOY in the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 14:17