JOY AND THANKSGIVING
"Do not look for rest in any pleasure, because you were not created for pleasure: you were created for joy. And if you do not know the difference between pleasure and joy you have not yet begun to live."
Thomas Merton, 1915-1968,
American Monk, Author/Poet
Pleasures are very short and fleeting, much like eating a chocolate bar that is sweet for a few short seconds. Joy is more like enthusiasm, as it is deep in your being, gushing out of you like an uncapped fire hydrant. Joy is flowing out of you and impacting everyone that comes into contact with its refreshing touch.
How blessed we are to live in this great nation that allows so many great freedoms. I am so thankful that my wife and I have been able to raise our family in rural America, and am so blessed to have our adult children living nearby. What a blessing it is to spend quality time each week with my grandchildren! I am grateful, too, for the opportunities I have had in business, for the fact that all of our material needs are always met, and for the relationships that have been cultivated over a lifetime. Yes, we are truly blessed and our lives have truly been enriched in so many ways, my heart overflows with joy!
I believe the key to receiving the joy, peace, and happiness that we all want more of in our lives is giving to others. If you want joy, you must give joy; if you want peace you must give peace; if you want greater happiness you must share more happiness with others. Being thankful will trigger all of this in our lives. Counting our many blessings and knowing where these blessings are coming from is what being thankful is all about.
This week let me gently encourage you to search your life, and begin adding up all the blessings in your life. Be assured as you search your life for these blessings that joy will flow out of you like a mighty river. You will not be able to contain the power of this simple life strategy. It will spread and you will have a positive impact on your family, friends, co-workers and everybody that you come into contact with. This will impact your life in such a powerful manner that you will be changed forever.
Photo above taken by Vicki L. Prentice is of our two oldest grandsons, Ethan (left) and Justin, who bring much joy to my life.