Thursday, January 17, 2008

The art of being happy...

a.k.a. dealing with the dumb and the divine


"Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect. It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections.”

I read this quote today and it grabbed me after dealing with the rollercoaster of the dumb and the divine.

I got lots of great stuff done and moved forward on projects and was quite happy with the results. However, I also dealt with a few dumb things. Again, Christians continue to amaze me. It's never the unbelievers that shock me. They are really good at being...unbelievers. If only Christians were as good at being Christians as unbelievers are at being unbelievers!

These are things every pastor deals with in the up and down life of pastoring. I guess it should really be no surprise ...we just had the "week of prayer". And with any surge forward you have to expect the counter attack of something out of left field that really makes no sense. (Thus the reason I have termed it dumb.) I have come to the point in my life where I realize, this is just ministry and life in general. It just is what it is. It's always going to be like this to some degree...so I might as well just CHOOSE to count it all joy and keep the joy producers up close to me and the joy zappers as far as possible.

Author and therapist Dr. Charmaine Saunders says this:

You can have that `bliss’ [happiness] all the time, in the sun, in the rain, on good days and difficult, when life is going your way and when it appears everything’s against you. It’s feeling `okay’ inside all the time. That is true freedom.

Yes, it is a very freeing thing to realize you can be happy no matter what is happening. You can be as happy as you want to be. I know it's sometimes easier said than done. When I wake up and nothing was done the night before in the house except for what I did, I think to myself (and sometimes say out loud), "And I'm supposed to be happy?" Well, yes. In spite of what I may wake up to, face at work, or come home to - happiness doesn't have to be based on these events.

James 1:2-3 "Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance."

All the stuff's gonna be there tomorrow. It's going to be there three months from now, three years from now, thirty years from now. Might as well count it all joy, right now. There's no better time than - now.

I came home tonight and started making dinner. I promised Dustin I would make fried chicken. I rarely do anymore because it's not exactly the healthiest dish in the world. But tonight I made it with homemade mashed potatoes and gravy, and corn. Casey joined us for dinner and brought some cookies with her for dessert. It was a good night sitting with my family around the table.

Everything is not perfect. Ministry takes care of that. :-) But I choose tonight to look beyond the imperfections and enjoy things ...

sitting with my family eating dinner...

laying here with Larry reading and blogging quietly...

going over our plans for our Fun Friday date...

loving the fact that I have a great sense of satisfaction at what I can accomplish through God's power and the gifts He has given me...

experiencing great fulfillment and joy, living with the goal everyday that He find me faithful.

1 comment:

Deborah Shank said...

Great post and insight Deanna! Thanks for sharing.

Blessings to you.