Authentic Joy

Friday morning on my way to work I got stuck in some construction traffic and noticed a man waiting for a bus on a street corner. Though it wasn’t obvious at first, I noticed that this guy was somewhat developmentally challenged. He was about my age, but I could tell from his next action that he didn’t carry all the baggage on his back that I do.

As the traffic started to flow I saw this guy start thrusting his fist into the air and pumping it down. It caught me off guard for a second till I noticed the semi truck traveling toward him. This guy was so excited to see the semi and it was going to make his morning if this semi driver would blast his air horn. I started to feel sorry for the guy as the semi began to pass quietly, but then at the last second the driver let out a short horn blast. The man on the corner had a huge grin on his face as the semi rolled away.

That got me thinking about why I don’t get noticeably excited by life very often. Why don’t I find joy in the simpler things of daily life?

It’s easy to look at people like this guy on the corner and feel sorry for them, but we can learn about joy from them. I think one secret to the joy I see in people like this is simply their innocence or lack of what I’d call more worldly concerns. They’re not focused at impressing people, climbing the corporate ladder, or ashamed of their failures. They’re authentic. I want to live my life more like this!

How about you? What robs you of joy in your life?

3 thoughts on “Authentic Joy”

  1. The only thing that robs me of joy in my life is the all mighty dollar. Other than my fincances I try not to let anything else bother me. However, my kids are constant reminders of the simple joys in life. Also the path that I have left behind me has left me with great appreciation for my current path.

  2. Bill- Great post. Authentic joy… it is easy to find in children and the thing that robs that from me is feeling like I need to get “everything” done and not allow myself to take the time to watch our kids. One of the biggest joys of my life is watching Ben exploring how to have a relationship with God and a joy today was watching him as he perched on the end of the couch with his hands folded speaking to God asking Him why it was His decision to make the satellite go out because he (Ben) really wanted to watch a show! 🙂 I love that he wanted to have this conversation with God!

  3. What robs me of joy in my life is worrying about the future. Imagining worse case scenarios about what will or will not happen occupies my mind and isn’t from my God, but a thief of my joy from my enemy Satan. I’m relieved to have discovered a solution to that -“Taking captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (Corinthians 10:5) Practising thinking about what I’m thinking about and only allowing thoughts that are (Phil. 4:8- true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, praiseworthy) lets me live in the joy and peace that God intends for me. Praise God and Jesus – the Prince of Peace!! (and a link to Mary Whelchel’s book, “Think About What You Think About”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *