It isn’t every day that I get to bear witness to someone enjoying gardening and the joy of the earth. However, I have seen that joy in its full glory!
A few summer’s back I received a phone call mid-afternoon to see if Daughter Number Four wanted to come spend some time picking tomatoes in the garden with my brother. She sure did! She started walking down to my parent’s house, while I got keys and driver’s license and headed that way in the car. I did stop and pick her up on my three-block drive.
My brother was waiting for her with a sack to put her tomatoes in, and showed her how to best pick the ripe ones. She picked until she had a pretty full bag. She was so excited when her uncle told her that she could keep what she had picked to take home.
Then he told her he was going to go plant some late summer plants. He had kale, Swiss chard, and radish seeds and cabbage and Brussels sprout plants. He showed her how to make rows and put the seeds in the rows and cover them up. The next thing I know, she has her shoes off wriggling her toes deep in the freshly cultivated soil. “It’s like a beach, without the water,” she said as she ran over to a large area that hadn’t been planted. She was soon on her hands and needs, sifting the dirt through her fingers. Oh, and that wasn’t the extent of it. She threw herself in the air and yelled “cannonball!” landing full out on the soft, newly tilled earth. When she got up, she was covered from head to toe in dirt, smiling from ear to ear. This was joy. She was joyous in her approach to loving the fresh earth! I let her get her full fill of joy, before taking her home to give her a bath.
Are you living a Joyful Life? You may be happy in your life, but are you living a Joyful life? Do you know the difference? Happiness is a state of doing; while joy is a state of being. The definitions of happy are indicative that the feeling is not a value based or core state. 1. Favored by luck; 2. Notably effective; 3b. Suggestive of happiness. We do things to make us happy. Joy is the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune. It is the prospect of possessing what one desires. Joy is the feeling that transcends happiness to the core emotion that was present with us at birth.
D4, playing in the garden dirt was experiencing pure joy. Work on living a joyful life, not just a happy one. First, know that Joy is a choice and is essential to the highest quality of living.
Next, Spread the Joy. This is one of the best ways to cultivate Joy. Do Unto Others. You don’t even have to try very hard to make it happen. By being a genuine person, being nice, joy happens. Also, see how truly amazing it is to seek out joy, and find it in unexpected places…like the fresh dirt of a garden!
Today’s Challenge: Find the state of joy in your life! Do something that evokes joy, before you go to bed tonight. Do one thing every day to create your joy!
“Find out where joy resides and give it a voice far beyond singing. For to miss the joy is to miss all.” ~ Robert Louis Stevenson