“Be joyful though you have considered all the facts.”
Most people seem to think joy is something that just happens and only when good things happen. Often they think that one is either a joyful person or not. I think these thoughts are a bit sad and I think they are confusing joy with happiness.
It is true, we are happy when good things happen and unhappy when bad things come our way. But joy does not come and go. It is not dependent on circumstances or events. Joy is not simply emotion like happiness. It is a seed planted within us, and when cultivated over time its roots draw on the well-spring of our heart and it grows. The health and strength of that well- spring requires our vigilant tending and care.
I am usually happy and in good spirits but not always and no one would call me a happy-go-lucky kind of person but there is joy within me. Joy, for me, is the foundation of my life. It wasn’t always so. There were many years when I didn’t know joy, it wasn’t a fact of my life. I denied its presence. I won’t go into how joy became a reality in my life, I will just say it had to do with getting to know and spending time with, you know Who.
Joy is given to each of us.
Being filled with joy is a choice.
That’s a fact!
“Wealth consists not in having great possessions
but in having few wants.”
In today’s world the more we have and the greater the value of the things we have is, to many, what determines whether or not we are successful and happy. We are told to work harder and longer hours, make more money, make sure to be recognized and rewarded, and acquire all the things we want and we will be wealthy. But at what cost to the well-being of ourselves, those we love and care about, and society in general?
I am not saying striving for success and wanting things is wrong. Of course, we want things and to be the best we can be in all aspects of our lives! I am saying it is important to put thought into how we define success and what is good and that we see more than just ourselves in that definition. We must be careful to understand that what we need may be much different than what we want. We must understand that true wealth is rarely found in the things we have or want.
Of what does your wealth consist?
“Wherever you are is the entry point.”
I am at the place in life where there is undeniably more life behind me than ahead of me. I admit I spend a lot of time looking back and less looking forward. That being said this quote spoke to me loud and clear. I may have more past than future but where I am is the entry point to whatever I may have yet to experience.
I tend not to think about the future very often. If I do it is usually in a negative way. I will face health challenges and/or financial difficulties. I will need someone to take care of my daily needs. I will not be able to stay in my home. I will need to move to assisted living or a nursing home. And of course, what will happen to my catkids?
Those are valid concerns but when I look at the past there have been health challenges and finacial difficulties, I did have to spend an extended time in the hospital, I did have to return to my parents home for a time, and my cats were fine. So, starting now I am going to be more realistic about my future. Yes, there will there will be negatives but there will also be positives. I am going to enter the future, which starts every new minute, knowing that whatever happens, you know Who and I will be together and all will be well.
I expect there will be relapses into the previous way of thinking.
As you can see, I am going to need some practice in positive thinking!
Here is a test to find whether your mission on earth is finished:
If you’re alive, it isn’t.
– Richard Bach
I agree with this thought. I think we all have a reason for being here. Some folks are here to do big amazing things for the world others are here to do one small thing for for one other person. Whether the reason for being is big or small it is important and will be accomplished.
Some know what their mission is at an early age and work hard to get it done; some have no idea what their mission is or why they are here on earth. Some are known for their work(s) and are recognized and awarded while they live; some never know fame or the acknowledgement of their contribution.
I suspect I am of the latter group. I have no idea what my assigned mission is but I am pretty sure it is of the small category. That is okay with me. I don’t need to know. In fact, it would probably freak me out if I did. I just hope that when I die I am told what my mission was and that it was completed successfully. I think that is the last thing my guardian angel has on his list of duties regarding me and this life. Then we will both move on to whatever happens next.
“Things turn out best for people who
make the best of the way things turned out.”
There is no such thing as a perfect life. Everything doesn’t happen the way we want and we don’t get everything we want. Yet, we can have a good life and a happy one in spite of the little things that aren’t to our liking and bother us. Even the big ugly stuff that can stop us in our tracks and make us miserable can’t keep us down if we don’t let it.
Sometimes we just have to suck it up, put our big kid panties on, thumb our noses, and carry on with life the best we can. Other than the fact that one day we all die, there are no guarantees in life. So we might as well do what we can, make peace with what we can’t and get on with living.
All that being said…
I don’t think life is easy. Life is often painful and challenging. Those are just some of the wrappings to be torn away. So tear away where and when you must. Just be careful not to damage the beautiful gift of life you have been given.
“The greater part of our happiness or misery
depends on our dispositions and not our circumstances.”
I have a friend who is never happy. I cannot think of a time I have heard her laugh. Of course, she has had bad things happen to her, we all have. And she has been badly hurt by people she loved. It saddens me to see her spend her life being bitter about the past and allowing it to control the present with no hope for the future. I can understand how she feels. I have been where she is. I know it can be different.
There were times in my life that were pretty awful and I was miserable. What made me wretched and sad was how I processed what was happening in my life. I saw only the difficulties, the troubles and struggles. I didn’t see anything good. I was unwilling to accept help or advice. I became comfortable in my misery. It was easier to accept the misery than to do the work needed to see what was real and what was imagined.
Some of my reality was ugly but not all of it. I just focused on the ugly. My imagination worked overtime on the negatives and gave little thought to the positives. It took time and energy and hard work to learn to think rationally, to see my circumstances clearly and take resposibility for my mistakes and stop blaming myself for things I couldn’t control. Change was really hard. The anger and tears, denial and acceptance, lies and truth, to learn to live with what couldn’t be changed and change what could be, to forgive and be forgiven, all had to happen to begin again and to live a good and happy life.
Life is good if you don’t weaken… and don’t give up!