There came a time when the risk to remain tight in the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom. ~Anaïs Nin

Saturday, March 5, 2011

I'd Like to Teach the World to Sing

     As a mom, when asked what I want for my kids, I have often said “I just want my kids to be happy.”  But what does that mean exactly.  When I say it to myself “I just want to be happy” what do I really mean by that.  That I want to live a life free from pain? That I want to do what I want to do? That I want all my troubles to go away?

     TV advertisers make it sound so easy. All of my problems will melt away in a bowl of Campbell’s soup and I can dance and sing my way to a great day with Folger’s in my cup. If I’m sad, I can have a Coke and a smile, and if I buy the world a Coke, just think of the possibilities. So finding happiness should be as simple as a trip to the grocery store.

     But when I buy those products, they don’t deliver as promised.  So my search for happiness takes me elsewhere. To Starbucks, to the liquor store, and at times in my life, to the pharmacy.  But still this strange thing called happiness continues to elude me.  So where do I find it? And was it really promised to me at all?  Well, yes, in fact, the Constitution of this great country informs me that I have an unalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

     But when I look to the life of Jesus, I learn that when He approached His disciples and asked them to follow Him, He did not promise them happiness, in fact, He knew that they would be faced with a lifetime of persecution, pain and suffering, and ultimately death.   Of course, they didn’t have the option of Coca-cola to make the world a better place, but I digress…

     Ultimately, the choice is mine to make.  Do I continue to buy into the notion that the goal in life is to pursue happiness, and that there is something “out there” that will give it to me or do I trust that greater things wait in store for me by surrendering my life, my desires, my plans for the only One who can really make any promises to me at all.


  1. Oh Deb,that's a loaded question. First I must tell you that while I have a very close relationship with God,I do not believe in organized religion. If your still reading I will tell you what I see in this world. I see alot of people "pretending" to be happy or maybe they "think" they are because of their love of things "of this world". Many years ago I had a near-death experience and it changed my life forever,(I have never shared this with too many). Since then I have no fear of death and truly know where the happiness is. Deb,God put us here to learn and help others along the way,no more no less. Never think that you can't be yourself and still honor God. I hope I have not offended you in any way this is just what I believe.......Have a good one.

  2. I think that you are right. Happiness is promoted as a right today, anything is acceptable so long as it makes you happy. I think though that it's harder than ever to be happy today. We have far too many distractions.:)

    I also think there is an immeasurable distance between happiness and true contentment or deep, unchanging joy. Contentment and joy don't depend on perfect circumstances or an ideal life or always following the path that "makes us happy". It is something deep and precious inside of us, a confidence that allows us to be at peace and to feel joy even when everything is terribly wrong around us, even when we are sad. It is somewhat of a contradiction I think.:) True joy is a gift from God I think and contentment needs to be fought for.

    I wish you luck!:)

    Love Colleen

    P.S. I hope you don't think I'm stalking you with my comments!:) Haha! It's really just that we happen to be online at the same time often!!:)

  3. Dinah, I always appreciate hearing what people have to say. We are all different and have different opinions, I certainly am not offended by anything you say :) Thanks for continuing to follow me and thanks for your comments!
    Colleen...haha on the stalking comment. Too funny! I agree with what you say, I'm still searching for that more profound sense of joy, but I believe I am on the right path. I love your comments and appreciate that you take the time to respond to my thoughts. :)