All of us have experienced different moments of joy in our lives, different joyful events, some brief, some lasting. We could name so many of them and spend a few minutes smiling at those memories. But how does one make one's whole life joyful? How can we find joy in even the dreariest of days or the most mundane of chores?
Here's what George Bernard Shaw has to say about it.
The true joy in life is to be used for a purpose recognized by yourself as a mighty one, to be a force of nature instead of a feverish, selfish little clod of ailments and grievances complaining that the world will not devote itself to making you happy. I am of the opinion that my life belongs to the whole community. And as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for that communiyt what I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die. For the harder I work, the more I live. I rejoice in life for its own sake. Life is no brief candle to me. It is more like a splendid torch, which I've got hold of for the moment, and I want to make it burn as brightly as possible before handing it on to future generations.
No doubt we will each find our own "mighty purpose" in life, but we should remind ourselves of this purpose every so often, if not daily. We must remind ourselves that the world is much bigger than we are, lest we become complainers and whiners. We can easily take one look around us and see how blessed we are. This week I visited the East Stokes Outreach Ministry to learn a little bit about the way it operates, the way that its serves the less-fortunate, or the needy, if you will, in our community. And it didn't take long to remember how easy my life really is and how important it is to find ways to serve others who are traveling a hard road.
Take a few moments to reflect on what GBS has to say and see if you can promise yourself, and the community around you, to remember these sentiments and make them a part of your daily meditation. And remember to offer a smile to a stranger who may simply need a reminder that the world is not such a bad place.