My Circumstances Do Not Determine My Joy

“Your circumstances do not determine your joy.”

This is a thought that our pastor has shared many times. And lately I have really been struggling with it.

My joy comes from such a deep, meaningful place. My faith in God. My faith in myself. The undying love and affection of my (very adorable) husband. The smile on my boys’ faces. The warmth of family. The strength of good friends.

And yet?

I let the smallest, insignificant things take away my joy. The car broke down. The ER bill came in the mail. I’m about to live in a hotel. (OK. Maybe they are not all small.) But the things I listed before? The ones that give me joy? They do not change when the mailman comes or when the car doesn’t start. They are still there.

And yet?

I let myself get into a foul mood. I snap at my kids. I growl at my husband. I distance myself from family and friends. I ask “Why, God, why?!”

I’m working on changing that. I’m working on seeing the sunshine through the rain.  Being grateful. Saying thank you. And still thinking of those who wish these were their problems.

My circumstances do not determine my joy.

And neither do yours. So smile.

Feel the joy, friends.  And smile.

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