During our love and inspiration gathering on Sunday, April 1st one of the women in our gathering suggested that on the 8th (Easter Sunday for those who celebrate Easter) we have a dinner instead of our morning gathering. With the group’s enthusiastic approval, as well as my wife’s endorsement pending my willingness to make my baked ham and seven cheese mac and cheese, we agreed to do so. Shortly after some of our guests arrived and the abundance of food was on the table, one of our guests received a call from a family member in crisis and she needed to call 911. Our guests responded in different ways. One woman asked me for assistance with 911. Another began crying because it stimulated some of her past behavior. A third one felt helpless because she was not sure how to help her niece.
My wife laughed at me later because In the midst of it all I was calm and joyful. I had compassion for all people were feeling and experiencing, however, none of it was disturbing my peace or my joy. That is the amazing thing about joy; it is not connected to external circumstances. Happiness, or what I refer to as happenness, can be dependent on the external, but joy is internal and has nothing to do with happenness. Joy has nothing to do with others or the external. Happenness does.
Joy is the essence of who you are. When you can maintain your connection to the fountain of joy, which flows through you it is present. When you stay plugged into that joy that comes from being in tune with Spirit and your authentic self, then it does not matter what is happening externally; it does not matter what people say or do, nothing can steal your joy. It might affect your happenness, but it cannot affect your joy. Joy will be present regardless of whether you are dealing with sadness, disappointment, or confusion.
Joy for me is where I live. It is this sweet space within my innermost being and the space where I co-exist with the Divine. It is this space, which allows me to stay joyful in the midst of the storm. This joy allowed me to stay calm while we were working with 911 yesterday. This joy enables me to stay calm even when I have not been able to see out of my left eye due to a lost contact. All kinds of things can happen in our life; people get sick, they die, they say things but none of that can steal our joy unless we let it.
One way, which I allow it to do that, is by taking things personally and making them about us. When this person chose to take handfuls of pills, I could feel compassion for her and those who knew her, however, this was clearly about her and her story. It was not about me. I could have chosen to make it about me, however, that would not have done my guests or me any good. There are people in my past who have said things that have had an affect on my happenness, but I have still had to choose not to take things personally.
When Zoe was diagnosed with cancer last year, I had to choose not to allow this to steal my joy. Was I saddened by her diagnosis? Of course, I was; this is my soulmate. However, it did not steal my joy. Rather, I truly believe it was my joy and the positive energy we both chose to bring to the table, which has allowed her to come through all this with minimal side effects and a much stronger relationship with each other and ourselves.
In some respects, we put a no vacancy sign on our hearts and souls. They are permanently rented to love and joy, an awesome couple. They are with us always and in all circumstances. Gone are the tenants who have attempted to rent from us on occasion, like doubt, fear, lack, and worry. The no vacancy sign is up, our spiritual garden is overflowing with present blossoms of love, and there is an ever-flowing stream of joy running through our yard. So welcome to the space where joy resides!