There are some really big things which have brought us joy. Recall your first kiss. Your wedding day. The birth of a child, grandchild or sibling. Graduating college or University. That phone call to let you know you got the job!
These are moments in our lives when we are likely to have been flooded with joy. They made us feel elated. They made us smile from ear to ear (and smiling is a real big thing!). They filled us with real joy – joy that overflows; joy that makes us want to tell everybody what’s happening. Joy that seems to just…explode within us!
This is a great form of joy because it touches all of who we are. Not only that, these moments of joy leave within us a residual joy. The word residual derives itself from ‘reside’ and it means that some of that joy still lives within you as a result of the moment of overwhelming joy. And thats kind of big deal!
Joy lives within you.
It’s a big deal because we can tap into that joy to a degree. Let me explain.
When you read the first paragraph above you probably felt something within you. When you think of that first kiss does it make you smile? When you recall becoming a parent, or achieving something significant does it make you feel something like joy?
For most of us the answer will be yes. This was residual joy. The moment of intense joy leaves its gift of residual joy imprinted in your soul. Memories are really powerful. That’s true for both positive and negative memories. Those of us who have been through abusive situations, relational breakdown, loss of a child, or other traumatic situations can testify to the far-reaching effects and a negative memory. Unfortunately, these memories are very emotionally, spiritually, and practically strong so we recall them easier and they leave negative residue. We easily tap into this regularly.
In the same way we can tap into our positive joy-filled memories to experience joy today. This does take work because our minds are easily drawn to negative memories. We need to actively recall those positive joy moments and bring the emotion attached to them into our lives today. Each of us has a well of joy deep within us that we can draw from.
Each of us has a well of joy deep within us to draw from.
As you go through today why not take some moments to draw from that well of joy. Take time to tap into your residual joy and encourage yourself with your positive memories. Recall all that is has gone well in your life. My Grandfather used to tell me “count your blessings” – it’s amazing how recalling the positive past can impact on your life for the better today.
May your joy-filled memories make you smile and experience the pleasure of joy today.