What does it mean?
Webster list it:
- 1a : the emotion evoked by well-being, success, or good fortune or by the prospectof possessing what one desires : delightb : the expression or exhibition of such emotion : gaiety
- 2: a state of happiness or felicity : bliss
- 3: a source or cause of delight
Walking in high spirits can be difficult to achieve and hold on to at times. It seems to be so deeply tied to security, safety, courage, comfort, love, purposed, contentment and many other human characteristics. So much so that if void of these and many others it can be difficult to attain joy.
Children on the other hand seem to have a better grasp on this state of being. They call on it with ease as if it never leaves. So much so that a child without it can be one of our indications that something or all is not well with the child. We may associate it with less to worry about, void of responsibility, carefree, careless, not focused, playful and many other terms that are sometimes posed as negative or used in negative terms. For most children the joy seems to be innate almost built in. Almost begging the question if we should even attempt to do things contrary to the Joy they seem to have so naturally.
Participating in their joy seems to or can qualify you as cool and engaging in their eyes. So are you cool? Are you engaging with the little ones and even the not so little ones (teens). They clearly measure adults along these lines if you pay close enough attention. Kids are looking for us to partake in what they find to be joyous but most adults may inadvertently push the invite aside for many reason. Some of the obvious reasons for this rejection: place, time, context, bore, weighted thoughts, burdens, sorrow, other things to do, and many others.
As a generation, culture and as a people in time as a whole. We have moved away from teaching our kids compared to the stark contrast of days only one or two generations ago. Well who can we blame? Is it the systems of the world, Is it the access to media that fills our days and night, Is it our reliance on the education system to do the lifting of educating, Is it the moving away from faith based teachings and values along with morals referenced as the source. We must be vigilant of all the changes that occur as we seek to build a life per say.
Subjecting all things to the Creator as opposed to ourselves, makes for easy reference because as humans are always changing. The arguments that some changes are inevitable but without a firm foundation it seems like we move solely based on how we feel. Teenage years is a major place where most seek things to build who they are as growth occurs. Mastering emotions and self control as a major contributor to some of the challenges that develop. The understanding of what the body can do coupled with the mobility and exposure can lead to some huge collisions that can shake the foundation of the individual, shaping and effecting who they are and in some cases worse, who they become…….
If we are the ones called to steward these children in the way they should go, shouldn’t some things be deeply rooted in a consistent truth and not in an inconsistent belief of what we think is right or wrong. Looking inwardly only is the result of the self guiding navigation that we sometimes attempt and it leaves kids whose vessels are still being built to imitate or follow our leads of this independence. Especially with the limitation of our bodies when exposed to certain environments, substances and conditions.
Everything has a purpose and things used outside of their purpose is abnormal use (abuse). That especially includes us as well! The recovery from any of these “life lessons/mistakes/self exploration” can and has proven to be just to hard to come back from on our own especially to our youth. No matter the amount of pills, therapy, or course correction that we do.
Those who believe that we are spiritual beings that live in a body and possess a soul should consider how they would guide or support a teen when the problem goes beyond the body. The sadness of depression, self worth, loss, crippling fear, divorce, identity, lack of purpose, absence of love and how to recognize it, moreover the ability to offer love to another. All of which go beyond what one learns in the standard biology class. Providers and Specialist who have practiced medicine and trained for years have little understanding of such things.
Which way is up? I believe it that leadership starts with the management of a gift you already have on the inside that is identified and served to another. The gift identified can then be polished and multiplied by its use for another. I believe our Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to love one another, he makes that clear in his Word.
““A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.”
John 13:34 NIV
Our children need to know and be exposed so they have no doubts of love. They all want to hold on to the joy they possess, but the question becomes who should they turn too when they clearly are better at it than most adults. Who will you turn too as an adult in order to reclaim what was lost.
Kidstrive to keep joy accessible and not only view it as vapor.