These crazy days have us spending time with our family members, way more than usual, when in actuality most of our relationships have been built for just the opposite. Most moms and dads are not accustomed to being at home all day and children are not accustomed to learning at the same table as their siblings. Needless to say, we are finding out how much or how little we know about these people we call family. We are also finding out how much we value and protect these relationships close to us.
On March 22nd I spoke about us acting like ourselves and thus protecting others from us. This was in reference to building the joy capacity of our homes and personal lives. (Please watch it here to better understand this blog)
A basic fact of neuroscience is that we are designed to operate with joy as the dominate emotion in our lives. There are other major emotions which would love to dominate our actions and decisions like fear, sadness, shame, despair, anger, and disgust but when we allow this, we will find that we are not acting like our true selves. The end result is usually damage to a relationship as we project this emotion onto others, thus not protecting others from me.
A major maturity indicator is whether I can protect people from myself. Lashing out in anger is an example of not protecting others from me. Constantly worrying about the effects of Covid 19 causes me to not act like myself and thus project that worry on to my family members. We were designed to operate in joy while processing the root causes of every negative emotion. God has designed us to experience all of the emotions but they are not meant to rule us.
Scroll through the many references to joy in the Scriptures and see what God says about living in joy and returning to joy. The creators of the Life Model claim that a well-trained brain can return to joy within 90 seconds of any tragedy. What? How do we do that? Here is a simple way to practice returning to joy from every negative emotion. When you find yourself operating in one of the previously mentioned negative emotions let your heart begin to meditate on Scriptures that speak the opposite and see what happens. Your circumstances will probably not change but your feelings regarding it surely will. What we portray to others around us will also change and this is how we protect others from ourselves and thus protect the relationship over the issue.
Here are great scriptures to help us return to joy:
- from fear – Psalm 56:3
- from anger – James 1:19-20
- from sadness- know the source 2 Corinthians 7:10 and the season Psalm 30:5
Earlier this year we received a Word as a church to ‘See for yourself”. This might be a good time to do that. May the Lord bless you on your journey to joy.
Marlene has been the Children’s Pastor since October, 2017. Did you know…Marlene has a twin, Darlene, and served as the commander of her ROTC battalion because she had the loudest voice. Hmmm!.