Tag Archive | happiness

Simplicity is a great word

Frozen thorn

Frozen thorn

Red at Christmas

Colour at Christmas

Both photos used with permission of photographer MeticulousMick   http://meticulousmick.wordpress.com/2014/01/12/iced-thorn/#comment-4712   and  http://meticulousmick.wordpress.com/2014/01/11/colour-at-christmas/

Simplicity is a great word to describe the above photos.  I used to like much busier photographs and art work when I was younger but of late simplicity has been the key for me–simple and peaceful,  just the way I would like my life to be.   When I said that in my comments on one of the photos, the thought occurred to me that it sounded like the beginning of a blog post!  Ideas come from everywhere!

I love the peacefulness of simple art like much of the art of the Impressionists–Monet is a particular favorite of mine.  Depending on my mood, I will usually listen to more peaceful music of all kinds.  I found long ago that the more popular “rock” music of the last few years is mind jittering!  Now when I am in the mood for lively music,  give me that old rock music I grew up with in the 50’s and early 60’s and I’m happy as a clam at high tide!     Sometimes I just enjoy the peacefulness of no music or tv running when I am at home.  that’s not to say I don’t like to be around people.  I certainly do!   I love being in my church, visiting with friends in small groups.  I enjoy going out to eat even if it is by myself, wandering around a book store or a quilt shop (my budget shivers with fright when you let me loose in a place like that!)   A few days ago, one of my granddaughters asked me to go shopping with her while she chose fabrics for a quilt.  That was such fun!  She didn’t “need” me to be there with her–she has a great eye for color – but to be asked to go along and help just made my day!  A simple time of fun with a precious young lady and her Mom.

At one time in my life I thought that to be happy and to live well, I had to amass a lot of “things” as a way of showing others how successful I was in life.  If I didn’t have money in my pocket (which was often) I looked upon me as a failure.  I have to admit I still do like to have nice things and there isn’t anything wrong with that as long as those “things” don’t become the priority in my life–taking it over and keeping me from enjoying real living.

I found a quote which says it well.   “It is the sweet simple things in life which are the real ones after all.”   Laura Ingalls Wilder    When I saw the above photos, sweet and simple were the words that came to mind.  Don’t they just look like they are coated in sugar?  Sweetness and simple beauty in the midst of a stark winter background to remind us of the beauty of simplicity in our lives.

One of my favorite books in the Bible is Philippians.  Philippians 4:13 is a verse I cling to and has helped me through many things in my life, but leading up to that, Philippians 4:12 speaks to me also.

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.
(Philippians 4:12) NIV

The first part of the verse is true in my life as in many lives.  I strive for the last part of the verse-learning the secret of being content no matter the situation in my life at any given time.  Contentment –sometimes I feel it; often I do not a clue what real contentment is.  Definitely something to ponder and to work on improving in my life.  Proverbs 15:16
Better a little with the fear of the LORD than great wealth with turmoil.  
  How very true!  After all, we can’t take it with us when we leave this earth so isn’t it better to spend our time learning to be happy and content with less and store up our treasures in heaven instead of on earth?     Lots to ponder on!

I feel like I kind of wandered around with Random Thoughts in this post and I hope it doesn’t bore anyone who reads it.  Perhaps I should change the name of my blog to Elaine’s RAMBLING Random Thoughts!   hahaha

Have a blessed day everyone!  Praying for a simple, happy day for all and for those of  you who are in the snowy areas of  the country, be safe if you are out on the roads.

I’ve Decided–today I will smile!

The above quote has a great deal of meaning to me because a dear friend sent it to me about a year ago, hoping to  cheer me up, make me smile again, and wipe away my tears.  I saved it and, in fact, printed it out and had it on my bulletin board for a while as a reminder to never let my smile get away from me because of the actions or words of someone else.  I’ve never forgotten it and recently I came across it again while going through some desk drawers.   It has been constantly on my mind since I rediscovered it and it has haunted me.   Why?  I’m sure sometimes that I know why.  Other times I am not so sure.

When my friend sent it to me, it did have the affect he had hoped for.  It did make me smile and obviously since I have never forgotten it, it has continued to do what it was meant to do.   When I find myself downhearted, unhappy, sure that I’m not good enough because things are not going exactly the way I want them to or relationships with others are not what I think they should be,  I think about this quote and it pushes me back into “real thinking”!

My life is not perfect nor is anyone else’s life perfect.  However I can choose to make my life a negative experience or a positive experience.  If I think in negative terms, my life will be exactly that–filled with negative experiences.  I know people who seem to begin each day with comments like “Today is just going to be another bad or miserable or awful (you fill in the blank) day.   At the end of the day those very people wonder why everything seemed to go wrong with their day.   I believe they call it a self-fulfilled prophesy, don’t they?

Now if I decide each day is a new beginning and that my day will be a good one, despite what transpires, at the end of the day I will be feeling a lot more positive and able to smile and tell myself that even if the day was not perfect, it was still good.  My day was not a failure because the only failure is in not doing anything.  Starting my day with a positive thought of its outcome keeps me from giving up and doing nothing.  It keeps me motivated to do my very best or certainly pushes me in the right direction.

Of course I have to be realistic about it.  There may be someone or more than one someone who will say or do something that disappoints me or makes me feel bad, unloved, unwanted.  Should I let that totally ruin my day because they think differently of me than I would want them to?  It’s very hard not to react in that way but think about it.  Who of us always likes everyone, can give everyone what they need or want in this life?  None of us!  So why should I feel like it is the end of my world when someone does not give me what I wish or does not feel the way I would want them to?  Is it the most awful thing that could happen to me?  Unfortunate perhaps, but definitely not awful; not even close to awful!  It’s all in how I choose to react to any given circumstance.  I have decided to do my best to react in a positive way and to keep my smile.

To my friend who helped me see the light and encouraged me to keep my smile, I thank you!  I appreciate you!

Let’s Walk Together

Psalm 126:5    They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.  KJV

I received this verse attached to a gift at a Ladies church function one evening this month.  Since then I have been mulling it over in my mind.  What does it mean in my life?  Is it a coincidence that I happened to receive this verse? Is God trying to lead my thinking in a particular direction?  I’m sure he is doing that!  This verse, combined with the words of our speaker at the event who talked about finding our joy and happiness first in a relationship with Christ, gave me a lot to think about.

For a long time, I have searched for true happiness and joy in my life, many times deciding it would never happen for me; thinking I was apparently “not good enough” to have it.   I have cried many tears over time, both literally and figuratively,  wondering why I wasn’t “good enough” to have love in my life.

I didn’t have my priorities straight.  The first place to find that happiness and joy is, before anything or anyone else, with a relationship with the Lord.  He should come first in my life.   I am a believer, yes.  I pray.   I go to church.  But do I work at keeping Christ first in my life?  Is my walk with the Lord what it should be?   I have to say no; it is not.  I need to spend more time making Him a priority, letting Him be the friend He wishes to be.  Put Him before myself; before everyone else in my life.   He will show me the plan He has for me to find what I have been looking for all my life or show me that I have found it already.

walkwithgod