On Saturday, I wrote a fun note about the frenzy of brain activity that I think gets ignited when we’re in ‘surprise anticipation mode.’ Well, as if on cue, an out-of-the-blue surprise snapped me to attention on Sunday morning at the beginning of our Zoom church service, following: “Everybody ready? One! Two! Three!” whereupon all the screens immediately filled up with personalized creativity: notes and artwork and colored hearts and three-dimensional bouquets, all aimed at expressing love and appreciation – for me! Short response: Thank you so much! Upon reflection response: I was spot on!! The fireworks display did erupt in my brain! That little motor I imagined did spin up into high gear, flooding my joy tank, and leaving a lasting, happy-face buzz. I did have that expanded boundary realization that people think kind thoughts of me – the proof of which is all the work and coordination that went into preparing the big reveal! (I trust some of that joy-zest splashed back on you all, too!) One of the current authors I’m reading states that joy does not exist outside of relationships. The corollary is that joy does exist in relationships and I’m still spinning a bit from that sudden burst of refreshing relational connection.

Sunday’s celebration within a celebration was not a one off. It was totally the heart of the Father since he’s designed our brains to run on joy like a car runs on gas. His design is that we be born into a loving, human family. He adopts us into his Divine community of Love. He places us into the larger expression of his birthed-in-love family here while we await his return. Jesus invites us into an intimate, love relationship with himself. Every time we share what we love with those we love, we announce Jesus’ presence. Every time we express, in word or in deed, the love we have for one another, we joy-fill one another and get joy-fill splashed back on ourselves. That’s called reciprocity. Here’s to reciprocity! Here’s to y’all!  PD

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