As we discover more joy, we can face suffering in a way that ennobles rather than embitters. ~ Desmond Tutu
JOY can be found even in mourning the loss of two parents all within one month. Yesterday I knew when the ukulele choir began singing the familiar tune “I’ve got the JOY, JOY, JOY down in my heart” it was going to be an uplifting morning at the Towson United Methodist Refresh and Reboot women’s event.
The Book of Joy featuring two world-renown spiritual teachers, the Dali Lama and Desmond Tutu (authored by Douglas Abrams), was the focus of the keynote address given by Mabeth Hudson. Mabeth is co-founder of Well for the Journey and an attorney with a M.A. in Spiritual and Pastoral Care. One of the take-away ideas from her presentation was learning happiness and joy are two different things. Internal joy is much deeper than happiness and it can be found regardless of difficult circumstances one is surrounded with.
The morning also included basic stretching exercises by certified yoga instructor, Kim Smith which helped us let go, relax and become active participants in the morning-long immersion of Living Joyfully in Stressful Times.
At the end of the session, we were sent on our way with a little bottle of aromatherapy thanks to Maryanne Arthur of www.creativeblossoms.com and a sweet treat of handcrafted truffles from Maja’s Viennese Kitchen. Yummy – I promptly broke into chocolate joy as soon as I returned home. Well…after all, it was lunchtime!
Another added bonus was connecting with the mother of Laura Resau ,an author of young adult books whom I made contact with some years ago in Steamboat Springs, Colorado when she led a workshop at the annual Steamboat Writers Group Conference. Through our meeting we figured out I had gone to high school with her aunt Liz Resau Neal (Chairwoman of Refresh and Reboot). What a small world it is, indeed!
Thank you to Liz Neal, and to her Refresh and Reboot Team. The event gave me much to ponder and a fulfilling subject to write about.