Joy: Foundations Series Workshop 1

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Joy: A good definition of joy is the experience of someone being glad to be with me, and seems also to include being glad to be with one’s own self.

What is Joy? “Joy and rest is the rhythm of heaven” someone once shared with me. Joy being the smile and mild to strong feeling of gladness/excitement to see the face of another person and rest being the quieting that our brain needs after a boost of joy. Joy is shared primarily through eye contact, and facial expressions. You have probably observed a baby look toward a loving parent who then meets the baby’s gaze. Within seconds, both begin smiling and often laughing or being silly with one another. After about 15 seconds or so, the baby will usually look away and take a rest because the intensity has become all that it can handle and its brain needs to cool back down. Ideally the parent will just wait quietly for a moment or so and on its own the baby will soon reengage, eager for more joy building. This rhythm of joy and rest is repeated over and over and is the ideal way our brains learn to flow upward into joyful connection and back down into restful quiet.

The importance of joy cannot be overestimated in every single relationship or gathering in our lives including church functions and prayer ministry settings. When joy is present… When joy is missing…

walking into a room. Seeing faces that express they are glad to see me is a huge cue of safety.

How do we communicate joy?

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<– Return to Foundations Series Overview Page

Additional Description: It can be easy for us as facilitators to try to lead people through a process and find somewhere along the line that we’ve sort of left the person behind. The skills in this series should really help solidify the importance of tracking with others and with God’s spirit. This workshop series is designed to flow in the same way most Immanuel Prayer sessions flow only as if we were moving in slow motion and each workshop really zooms in on each each particular aspect of the way a session moves. For example,

1) Workshop 1. (and the beginning of each workshop) begins with taking time to meet each other, connect as people and help people feel safe, seen, heard, and at ease. No surprise, the theme of workshop 1 is joy, which to our brain means someone is glad to be with me.

2) Workshop 2 moves deeper into the importance of emotional safety, and particularly into the way that pausing and giving space to rest, and move at a relaxed pace can really help people be open to connecting with others and God. No surprise, the top two of the most important skills our brain needs to learn as babies and children to connect with humans are the twin skills of joy and rest and how to flow back and forth between joyful connection and quiet rest.

3) Workshop 3 moves more fully into the theme of

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