Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Art of Being Joy-filled

Joy is a thing to be cultivated. Children have a natural joy that sometimes is lost as we journey to adulthood. Cultivating childhood joy - that immediate appreciation of the explosion of joy packed experiences that surround us - is a worthy endeavor.

Joy is different than happiness. Joy runs deeper, wider, and stronger. Happiness is an surface emotion - joy is a state of being. Joy will sustain you in the times of trial when happiness fades away.

Joy can also be cultivated. How do you cultivate joy? The same way you cultivate a plant.
  • Prepare the soil
  • Plant a seed.
  • Add water and sunshine.
  • Nurture the tender plant.
  • Remove the weeds.
  • Fertilize the plant.
  • Prune the plant.
  • Enjoy the plant!
This week I prepared the soil and planted seeds of joy. Enjoy a surprise!

A young hawk stopped to rest near the goat pen. Surprise!
I didn't know that goats would "mother" sheep! The goat in the back is nursing both the lambs on the left. Surprise, surprise!

I added water and sunshine. Refresh yourself with things that hold good memories!

I have wonderful memories of going to the County Fair for many years.

I nurtured my joy. Feed your joy with more beautiful times that become beautiful memories.

Merry-go-rounds have always been a favorite ride of mine since I was very young.
Look! A blue horse!
I "removed the weeds and fertilized" my joy. Focus on eternal blessings and lasting joy!

Set your mind on the things above,
not on the things that are on earth.
Colossians 3:2 

The beautiful sunsets always remind me of the near presence of the Lord.
A little hug from God...
I "pruned" my joy. Joy that is focused on the Lord is steady and strong.

Hmmm... I prefer my joy to be like a good horse with a bridle rather than a ram with a saddle!
I spent time this week just enjoying "joy". Cultivate joy filled friendships - starting with  Jesus! And just in case you don't think that ***church*** is fun...

Mission Green Socks and Jelly Bellies

Common denominator: Green Socks.
Location: Front row of church service.
Purpose: To increase joy - mirth and hysteria were welcome extras.
Summary: Oblivious Pastor was voted to receive his Jelly Bellies after all, and participants did manage keep their minds (mostly) on the sermon!

Brought to you by the makers of Ya Just Had to be There Moments!
 
Cultivating child like joy is a definite art - one that comes naturally to us when we are young but must be remembered and practiced as we get older.

Rather like coloring outside the lines...

Enjoying the child within,
Kathy

Perhaps a bit of a stretch from what Athena intended, but here is my answer to "Back to Childhood" with "The Art of Being Joy-filled"!

September- Athena/LalalitaBodyCo - Back to Childhood September is traditionally back to school time. Remember the craft projects from your childhood, like macaroni noodle art, or tracing your hand to make paper turkeys, or getting your hands all ooey-gooey with finger paint?
This month, challenge yourself to "elevate" a kind of art or craft from your childhood into "high art". It doesn't have to be something for your Etsy shop; this is all just for fun.

20 comments:

  1. What an inspiring post! And thank for the reminder :)
    What a sweet mother goat! Love the cow cake - so cute!!
    Looks like you had a wonderful time at the county fair!

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    1. Thank you!
      I had a wonderful time at the fair!

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  2. Thanks for sharing my favorite part of fairs...the animals. Love the socks!

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    1. You are welcome - that's a "never miss" attractions for me, too.
      haha! Thanks!

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  3. Wonderful post and good reminder to find joy in the things around us, I love that cake. The socks were great also, finding fun and joy is easier than one thinks.

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  4. Sheep and goats!

    In all seriousness, I totally agree. One of my favorite phrases is 'happiness is a choice.' Some people can make themselves miserable in the best of times, but others can keep smiling through the worst.

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    1. I have seen that, too - takes way too much work to be miserable all the time! I'll take the smiles. =)

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  5. Inspirational post! How sweet of mama goat to take care of the lambs! I have two mama outside kitties that had kittens -- they were nursing each other's, didn't matter who needed to be fed!

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    1. Amazing how animal mamas will nurse other babies!
      Thank you =)

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  6. I love the distinction between joy and happiness! So true. This was a great idea for the challenge.

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    1. Thank you! Someone once pointed out the permanence of joy versus the temporary nature of happiness, and it stuck with me all these years.

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  7. This is such a great take on the challenge! Great post :)

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  8. I agree with joy versus happiness. Perhaps we humans forget that joy can be cultivated. happiness not so much. It depends on earthly things.
    What a sweet mama goat, nursing sheep.
    When we re-nested baby owls a few years ago, the parent owls took care of a couple babies that were not their own.
    I always loved merry-go-rounds, too.

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    1. Very true - it takes time to cultivate joy and sometimes we are in too much of a hurry!
      What fun - I have heard that chickens will do that with baby chicks.
      It was fun to watch the sheep and the goat!

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  9. Beautiful post! I especially love the hawk!

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  10. Beautiful post! I especially love the hawk!

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Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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