Drawn from my archives
A young woman was troubled. After five years, her marriage wasn’t going quite the way that she hoped it would. She was a busy mom of two little ones, they were struggling financially, laundry was backed up, the dishwasher was broken, and her husband was often overtired after long days of work. It had been a while since she had “mom and dad” time and even longer since she had any time for herself.
She was discouraged.
This wasn’t what she saw growing up. For the most part her parents seemed really happy so why wasn’t she?
Sitting across from her mother one afternoon, she opened up about her problems. “Mom,” she said, “how do you and Dad do it? How have you managed to raise four kids together and stay happy all of these years?”
Pouring her daughter a cup of tea, her mom smiled at her, hung up her apron and sat down for a chat. “One thing I can tell you for sure,” she said, “when I finally leave this earth I’ll be able to say that I had a reason to smile each and every day of my marriage.”
“But how do you know that for sure,” she asked. “What if he isn’t the same man tomorrow? And what if he disappoints you?”
“Because,” her mother said, reaching out for her hand, “He doesn’t hold the key to my joy–God does. As long as I’m married I’ll find a reason to smile. And if I have to dig deep for one, that’s what I’ll do.”
The best way to show my gratitude is to accept everything, even my problems with joy. – Mother Teresa
Choosing happiness is a decision we make each and every day. And here’s the thing–it’s not merely a mood that we choose for the moment, it’s an investment we make in our future. When we bring joy into our home we’re changing the atmosphere and impacting the lives of those around us. The scary thing is however that our our ongoing attitude has the potential to either impact them in a positive or a negative way.
Numerous studies have shown that people tend to mirror other people’s behavior. Knowing this was an issue, I was hesitant about leaving a Christmas party so early last year. Unfortunately however, we had something up and had to head home. Sure enough as soon as we started getting our boots on, several people stood up, grabbed their coats and followed us to the door.
I’ve seen this same type of behavior take place in restaurants. When one person decides to order dessert others follow suit. We’re just wired that way I suppose.
I watched a youtube video once where a woman started laughing on a train. Within three minutes the entire train car was laughing and no one knew why.
This can be a good thing, when someone has a positive impact on us, but it can also be a damaging thing when we mirror the bad behavior of others.
Regardless of how people treat us, or how bad our day is going, we always have a choice to choose our mood.
Don’t get me wrong. We’ve all seen how devastating depression can be. I’m not saying that this is a cure for clinical depression. But having suffered with it, I can say that this did help me to get through some of the dark days.
A good attitude can brighten a home. And let’s not forget that a good attitude is contagious.
In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. – 1 Thessalonians 5:18
You are loved by an almighty God,
The Time-Warp Wife
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