Tuesday, November 4, 2008

happy faces part 2

I'm almost finished with Elizabeth Gilbert's wildly popular book eat pray love. Tonight I read a passage that reminded me about what I wrote a few days ago. Here it is for you:

As I focus on diligent joy, I also keep remembering a simple idea my friend Darcey told me once - that all the sorrow and trouble of this world is caused by unhappy people. Not only in the big global Hitler-'n'-Stalin picture, but also on the smallest personal level. Even in my own life, I can see exactly where my episodes of unhappiness have brought suffering or distress or (at the very least) inconvenience to those around me. The search for contentment is, therefore, not merely a self-preserving and self-benefiting act, but also a generous gift to the world. Clearing out all your misery gets you out of the way. You cease being an obstacle, not only to yourself but to anyone else. Only then are you free to serve and enjoy other people. (p. 260)


In being willing to open ourselves up and admit that we are not always the happy people that we project to all around us, we take the first step in healing ourselves. Our great God who created us in his image wants us to rejoice in this fact: we are his, he loves us, and he wants us to be happy! Only then, as Gilbert says, are we free to serve and enjoy others.

3 comments:

rebecca said...

oooh! i like this quote. thanks for sharing! We should eat lunch again soon. Would you believe i have a cold again? Hope you are well!

J. M. Richards said...

Wow, I missed your last post and nearly this one as well.
Reminds me of stuff I've been saying on *my* blog. :)
The truth is, I'm there with you, even though we haven't really talked about it. Some days it's really a struggle to put on that happy face to the world, especially when you're expected to rejoice all the time.
Thankfully, God did give us permission to lament, also, when he included the psalms, job, and lamentations (among others) in the Bible.
That's part of the reason I'm so keen to do another "Blue Christmas" service--to give others a chance to be honest and receive healing from the God who cared so deeply about us that he came to Be with us.

maicher said...

Read your article, if I just would say: very good, it is somewhat insufficient, but I am still tempted to say: really good!
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