Inside Out is an adorable and smart movie about the emotions living inside 11-year-old Riley’s head. Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear and Disgust work together to guide Riley through transitions and the ups and downs of life.
The movie made me smile. It also made me think about how I approach life and react to problems. Do I respond with joy, sadness, disgust, anger, fear or a combination of emotions?
Ultimately, it made me think of who or what is manning my control center.
I like to think it’s joy, but I know it can be sadness, disgust, fear and anger as well. This isn’t always bad – these emotions work together for our good unless we give one too much control.
I think we have a problem in the church. I’m going to call it the “curse-of-always being-blessed-and-having-no-other-adjective-syndrome”. It’s pretty serious. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. You’ve talked to that lady (or man) at church before who is always blessed, right? Don’t pretend you don’t know what I’m talking about (unless you are that person, in which case, bless you).
For some people suffering with the “curse-of-always being-blessed-and-having-no-other-adjective-syndrome” they have the misfortunate fortune of nothing ever going wrong. Nothing breaks, they can go on vacation, they have a good job, their kids are not crazy and their dog is even sweet. They are #blessed.
Then there’s the person whose car is making weird noises, they are scrounging money for a weekend getaway, they are thankful for their job, but don’t get paid much and there are holes in the carpet from where they pray on their knees each night for their kids. They are blessed too.
See how this can be annoying? Sunshine and rainbows do not equate being blessed. Being a Christian does not mean you must be happy 24/7. Having the Spirit of the living God active and alive in you means you’re blessed. A better word would be divinus, the Latin word meaning divinely inspired and sacred. I also love the Greek verb eulogeo meaning to praise or to consecrate with solemn prayer.
I once stopped in a church’s office where the receptionist quite literally answered “blessed” (insert sappy tone here) to my question of “how are you?”. This is too much people.
“Joy” does not man the control panel on her own. Let’s be the complex beings we were made to be filled with the Spirit and reflecting our Father’s love, whimsy, thoughtfulness, riskiness, courage and wisdom.
If blessed is still your favorite word, have yourself a little party in your pew and be happy. I’d rather be divinus. Want to join me?