Joy Is a Gift Found in the Present Moment
JOY. The word itself seems to evoke a sense of peace and put a smile on our face. What does joy look like for our children, and how can we help them tune into this state?
Joy emerges for our children, as it does for us, when we feel heard, connected, cared for, valued, and loved. It arises when we are given the space to play, imagine, and create. It’s experienced when we find our way in learning something new, like how to ride a bike or read a book; in celebrating special moments; in creating memories together. Joy is contagious and can be passed along through a smile, hug, or kind deed.
Joy, inspiration, enthusiasm, connection, and love are balanced, centered states that occur when we’re tuned into our hearts. Sometimes we think big equals better, but joy is often found in simple, quiet moments.
Unity teaches that God is everywhere and that we are connected to everyone and everything. Joy is generated in the gift of the present moment. It can be found in taking a walk together and noticing what you hear, see, and feel. Use your imagination to guess what the birds, squirrels, and bunnies might be up to, or listen to what the trees and flowers may be saying.
Do you know that the “Prayer for Protection,” written by James Dillet Freeman, traveled on a rocket ship to the moon with the Apollo astronauts? Ask your children what they would like to send to the moon. Could they write a message to share with the stars? Learning this prayer and reciting it together is a beautiful way to spark joy.
The light of God surrounds me;
The love of God enfolds me;
The power of God protects me;
The presence of God watches over me.
Wherever I am, God is!
A Prayer for Joy in All Children …
Know you are loved beyond measure, now and always.
May joy fill your heart as you play and you praise.
You are connected to the birds, bees, and trees,
One with God, the wind, sun, and seas.
As you travel through life’s highs and lows,
May joy be with you wherever you go.
A Shared Family Prayer for Joy
Our family gathers to appreciate one another and the love, beauty, and abundance that surround us. With the gift of the present moment, we spark joy as we create, discover, learn, play, sing, and dance. Through life’s ups and downs, in both quiet and loud moments, knowing that we are embraced by God’s love, our hearts and home are filled with joy.