Archive for the ‘Joy’ Category

Gifts Outweigh the Trials

Thursday, March 23rd, 2017

How strange and vibrant and astounding is this gift of life! So what if it’s hard? So what if we’re hounded by troubles, pressured and embattled on all sides? So many good gifts outweigh the trials. Thank God that we encounter some resistance to our cavalier passage through this world. Thank God He has designed life not to be easy but to test us to the limit and so turn lazy ingrates into children of God who are strong and fearless and full of love.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 48

Enjoy Now!

Sunday, March 12th, 2017

Do not wait for retirement to enjoy yourself. Do not wait until it is too late to begin to enjoy your partner. Look at them, drink them in, feel them inside you, enjoy every gift they have. Do not wait to say how much you love and appreciate someone. Think of the people who have really meant something to you in your life and contact or call them. Just say thank you from your heart, because appreciation brings enjoyment. Do not wait to take a full breath of the air of life, to take such a bite out of life that when the juices run down your face, everyone will lick their lips. Open yourself and drink in life. It is all being given to you now.

— Chuck Spezzano, If It Hurts, It Isn’t Love, p. 244

Happy People and Pain

Saturday, January 14th, 2017

Happy people have just as much pain as anyone else, in some cases more. It could even be argued that the happy feel pain more acutely than the unhappy, whose feelings are relatively numb. The real difference in happy people is that they’re not trapped by their pain. Rather than settling inside a happy soul, pain moves through it as through a channel, and that channel is joy. Joy keeps pain moving.

Happiness, rather than indicating an absence of pain, denotes a certain efficiency of processing life’s problems. Happy people don’t stay stuck for long; their lives are too rich for that. Greater happiness empowers them to take on more challenges, and moving through challenges makes them happier still.

Joy knows it’s on the winning side. That’s why it can rejoice even in the midst of suffering. If any of life’s horrors were permanent or unconquerable, joy would be impossible. Yet how easily we’re cowed into a defeatist attitude. It doesn’t take a major calamity to get us down; a petty annoyance will do nicely. A day, an entire week, indeed a lifetime, can be spoiled by a series of light and momentary troubles. While one believer praises God in the midst of terminal illness, another grumbles because of a runny nose. What’s the difference between these two lives? Attitude.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 41-42.

Living in the Present, Without Fear

Thursday, December 29th, 2016

Fear can only be experienced by living in the future. Trying to live in the future now, which is impossible, only creates strain and fear. Even if we move only five minutes ahead in a difficult situation, we create a lot of fear for ourselves. By living in the future rather than the present, we can only expect our future to be like the past, because the past is all we have to give our future. However, if we fully live in the present moment, we give this to our future, and fear disappears. When living fully in this moment, no matter how difficult it looks, we are not concerned about our future; therefore there can be no fear.

— Chuck Spezzano, If It Hurts, It Isn’t Love, p. 213

God’s Joy

Thursday, December 15th, 2016

God is always presented as full of joy, especially when he pardons.

— Pope Francis, The Name of God Is Mercy, p. 117

Lighten Up, For God’s Sake!

Saturday, December 10th, 2016

As a parent, would you be pleased with dutiful children who went around heavy-hearted, oppressed with guilt and anxiety, fearful of suffering consequences for their every misdeed and never lightening up enough to share a laugh or a relaxing moment with you? Don’t loving parents want their children to enjoy life? “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone?” (Matthew 7:9).

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 40

Joyful Voices

Friday, November 25th, 2016

Joy has a voice. People are unhappy because they listen to unhappy voices. If you’re unhappy right now, it’s certain that an unhappy voice is sounding in your mind. To become joyful you must listen to a joyful voice, distinguishing the one note of joy from all the other voices that clamor for attention.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 37

Rejoice!

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2016

Joy is like breathing: It’s not enough to breathe in; one must also breathe out. In a word: Rejoice! Let your joy reverberate. Hug someone. Dance. Speak some inspiring words. Write a letter or a book. Don’t just think about happiness — be happy! Joy yearns to be physically expressed, acted out, lived.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 34

Life Wins.

Sunday, October 30th, 2016

We have staked it all on this — that life wins. Oh, dear friends — life wins.

Life wins. Sometimes now, especially if we will pray. But life wins fully, and very soon.

Just as we must fix our eyes on Jesus when we pray, we must also fix our hearts on this one undeniable truth: life will win. When you know that unending joy is about to be yours, you live with such an unshakable confidence it will almost be a swagger. You can pray boldly, without fear, knowing that, “If this doesn’t work now, it will work totally and completely very soon.” We can have that kingdom attitude of Daniel’s friends, who said, “God is able to deliver, and he will deliver. But if not . . .” we will not lose heart. Period.

— John Eldredge, Moving Mountains, p. 228-229

Happiness and Joy

Wednesday, October 26th, 2016

Happiness keeps joy honest. If the heart is joyful, let it tell our face.

— Mike Mason, Champagne for the Soul, p. 32