Joy is a tricky thing. Being happy and having joy are not the same thing.

I always remember it this way: Happiness depends on happenings.

That means that when you’re having a decent year, a good one even, and then you lose your job…your world doesn’t collaspe.

It means that when you’re perfectly healthy and then find out you have cancer, you still find things to smile and laugh about.

It means that if something were to happen to your house and all your things were suddenly gone, you would just start over and try to move on with a decent attidude.

Of course there would be times of frustration, maybe even some anger. But you wouldn’t let the things that happen control you or your happiness. You would choose to find joy instead.

But see it gets tricky when you consider what it means if you respond negatively to serious situations like those mentioned above. Does that mean you base your happiness on what happens, instead of having lasting joy?


Or maybe not. Because we’re all human, and we all fall short.

It would be ridiculous, even wrong, to expect someone to be thrilled to pieces that they lost all they own. It would be totally crazy to begin to expect your spouse to be excited that they lost their job.

They aren’t natural reactions. It’s not our first instinct.

But maybe it should be. Maybe we should see joy in so many little things that the big things begin to not phase us nearly as much.

While I see joy in many things, and it certainly helped me see the joy in having a brain tumor, I can always do much better. There are many days where I am just passing through; just going through the motions.

Sarah Markley is doing something for this month called 100 Joys. It’s all about noticing the little joys in life. They’ve got to be there, we just aren’t looking out for them. Which means joy is passing us by and we don’t even know it.

Starting tomorrow I’ll begin posting joys. As Sarah said on her blog, there is no secret list where we’re keeping tabs on previous joys (so that we don’t have to look for them any more). I do have a joy from today, and I will post it tomorrow. In fact, I’ll try to post three per day.

Join me? Join us? If you write about a joy (big or small) that you notice in your day, make sure you comment here or on Sarah’s blog, and I will check it out!

Have a JOYful day!