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Joy and Discomfort

Joy can be a tricky thing because of our deceit. You know, those illusions that we live under. The illusions that say, when I'm thinner I'll be happy. When I get that new job it'll be easier. When the kids get older I'll have more time for what I enjoy. etc. I fall into them all the time! But, let me ask you this. Has that ever worked out for you? Really? Or, has the new thing just brought new challenges you needed to overcome?

For me, it's the second one. The next good thing, simply comes with the next set of challenges, and then you'll be thinking of the next great thing that will make you happy. What if you were to recognize that where you are now is where you wanted to be? The place you prayed for, planned for, arranged for. And what if the key to your joy is accepting where you are? What if where you are is exactly where you need to be to prepare you for the next season? I've moved into the next season too soon and experienced the struggle of not being ready.

So, that is the reality that can be hard to accept. The next new shiney thing will have all it's own challenges. You likely know how to navigate some of the challenges of where you are, because the previous season prepared you for them. This is how nature, and God, works. The falling leaves are preparing the ground for winter for it's protection, for homes for the animals and bugs, etc. The winter is preparing the land and trees for spring with rest. It's a repititive cycle we watch all year long. Why wouldn't we recognize it in us?

The next great thing is not where all your happiness lies, it will be fun, but with a whole new set of challenges. It is not where all your joy and happiness is hiding from you. No circumstance or role can give you all of your joy. Except a dog. A dog can, and will, give you all the joy!

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