Of all the photos I’ve seen today this one struck a deep chord in me. On a scale of 1 to a bazillion (a bazillion being pretty friggin’ awesome) this one ranked right up there next to Jimmy Choos, savory wine and the latest in the Dekker Literary Vault of Awesome!! So, yeah that’s pretty high.
I could lament, in great detail and depth, about how the words just seemed to resonate in me causing me to reflect on its wisdom and the power it holds in my life. Yeah. No.
Simply put, it reminded me that life is all about perspective.
Many times we deem life to be long, unending and, for some, unfulfilled. It’s a journey frequented by tragedies, hardships and disappointments. BUT it’s also a time of self-discovery, joy, triumph and gratitude. Life is a treasure trove of beauty, power, and hope. Often times, we don’t see the wonderful things it yields until we’ve experienced the harder things it offers.
Show of hands: how many of you like hardship? Yeah. Me neither. In fact, I loathe going through situations that hurt, incite rage, create anxiety, inflame doubt, or make me tired or cranky or prone to rip my hair out from its roots. In case you couldn’t guess, I really don’t like to hardship. That said, I”ve learned that without it, I would never know what to truly value or appreciate in my life.
It’s easy to focus on all the things you don’t have. I mean even if I weren’t really trying to think on those things, media outlets do a pretty good job of making sure I never forget that my car is about 11 years old; my house was built sometime in the 1900′s; my furniture is quaint (primarily because I may be tempted to hurt my teens if it weren’t); and I shop at designer consignment stores. According to the masses, my possessions are too few to live a productive, full and enjoyable life. It’s enough to drive anyone into a slump. That’s when you start counting.
1. I’m alive, healthy and surrounded by a wide network of family, extended family and friends who truly love, challenge and support me. I’m not alone.
2. I can LOVE. Not only am I able to love others, I love ME!! How huge is that?! I love who I see looking back at me in the mirror AND I can receive love.
3. My teens are deliriously happy, well-adjusted, well-balanced and are just two of the most wonderful people of integrity you will meet. No, they’re not perfect…just brilliant!
4. I have joy! I’m not talking about happiness which is temporary or predicated on current situations or feelings. No, I have the real deal. The kind that simultaneously puts a smile on your face, and in your heart, just because. It’s something you radiate even when life hurts.
My list could go on and on and never end, at least for a while.
Friends, there are things in life that money can never buy. Do not despise the simple joys in your life. Family, friends, shelter, joy, peace of mind, freedom from oppressive people and situations, jobs, gifts, self-esteem and other things we entirely take for granted. These are the things that make us rich, that make life worthwhile.
Does having money help? You bet it does! Heck, I’d love to own a new Toyota Prius or some other car that’ll get me about 50 miles to the gallon. I’d love to have a brick face on my house complete with 2 bay windows and a screened in porch. Money helps with all of that. I’m just not going to allow my focus to be on what I’m lacking especially given all the gifts I presently have.
It’s all about perspective friends. So why not concentrate on the things worthy of your admiration and appreciation?