Recently, someone in our neighborhood passed away. I don’t know the actual circumstances, but not long ago I had noticed them doing yard work and had always admired the work and love they put into their home. Our neighborhood is somewhat rural, so you don’t see each other, driveway next to driveway, but you’re aware of coming and going.
The holidays are such a mixed bag. Some celebrate, some don’t. Some find joy and others sadness. I bounce between the two: sad about being without parents, joyful and grateful for my husband and children.
I also get sad when I realize my priorities aren’t always what I hope they’ll be. The unimportant things sneak in like a thief and quickly snatch precious moments.
But, there is so much joy is being here in the present with those that I love and with those, if I’m given an opportunity (and there’s always opportunity), that have a need. I’m working towards being available and open to whatever that need is. We’re only given so many moments to use. There’s none to spare.
Joy isn’t an elusive creature, hidden away till a holiday. We have to feed it year round for it to flourish and come out of hiding. It can start with something simple like reaching out to a neighbor in some way. We can create joy in our small spaces of the world, whether it’s a holiday or not.
Even though the holidays can be bittersweet, dwelling on the present and having a heart of generosity and selflessness is where true joy is found. There’s so much to be celebrated in everything happening around us. Sometimes the things to be thankful for are too small to be seen with the naked eye. Sometimes it takes intentionally looking at your life and digging to find the blessings, but they’re always there!
So, this holiday season, where’s your joy? What are some of the things in your life that make the season merry and bright?
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