Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Learn to celebrate the little things in life

"Life is a celebration of many splendid things. You only have to look to find just a few...birthdays...happy music...a cup of hot friends...a picnic in the park...puffy!...spring rain...flying a kite on a windy day...cuddly dogs...curious cats...a double scoop ice cream cone...a surprise party...colorful fish...a bright, sunny day...chirping birds...weddings...a carousel ride...holidays...a crazy quilt...peace and harmony..." Author Unknown 

When was the last time that you let your hair down, kicked your shoes off, jumped for joy, threw a party for one and really, I mean really, celebrated something? If it's been awhile or if you never have, then you're missing out on one of the greatest gifts known to humankind --- the ability to express joy through celebration.

Life can be hard, a daily grind at times. A 60-80 hour work week, working 2-3 jobs, managing a business, raising kids, taking care of sick children or elderly parents, relationship troubles, being unemployed, homeless, or incarcerated, battling a terminal health condition, a disability or mental illness. These are just a few of life's pressing realities that can leave little time or desire for celebration. And yet, never taking time to celebrate even the small joyful moments along life's journey could make you miserable and your life less than fulfilling.

Finding joy in the journey has proven psychological as well as health benefits. Thousands of years ago, King Solomon saw the wisdom of cultivating a life-long habit of joyful celebration and recorded it in Proverbs 17:22 AMP:
 A happy heart is good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.

Life on earth is far from being perfect. Nevertheless, your view of life determines how much joy you will derive from it. Are you that person who dwells on life's negatives or that person who sees the proverbial silver lining behind every dark cloud? And if you are one of nearly 30 million Americans diagnosed with some degree of depression, the way out may not be easy but it is possible. Authors John Van Sickel and Dr.Walli Carranza offer practical advice for overcoming depression in their respective articles, "6 Practical and Powerful Ways to Overcome Depression" and "How to Overcome Depression Naturally." Both authors agree that changing the way you think and serving others can add to your sense of contentment and joy in life.

After all, life is what you make it. You may not be able to do much about your circumstances (at least for now) but you can do something about your attitude. In spite of life's uncontrollable events and sometimes disappointing experiences, learn to filter out the garbage and savage what really matters. The power to choose is in your hands. Choose to celebrate the little things. Why not begin by thanking God for the gift of another day...
This day belongs to the Lord! Let’s celebrate and be glad today. Psalm 118:24 CEV