Do you know someone who lives project to project? Ailene is someone in my life who is constantly working on something BIG. She’s always in one of the stages of looking for, buying, or furnishing a new house. If it’s not real estate, it’s a new dog, or a new career. It’s always something and it’s always big. If I apply pop psychology here, I could conclude that Ailene is unhappy and searching for fulfillment. She’s counting on things new and different to change her life.
But new and different can be scary. Ask the freshmen who started school this week. It’s easy for us to look at somebody else’s challenges and know that it will make them stronger. It’s hard to see it when we’re the one going through hell.
If you like your routine, you’re less likely to venture out of your comfort zone. I’m shocked when I stop to realize that I gladly turn down invitations to parties or concerts because I don’t want to miss my Friday Shabbat dinner ritual. Sheesh! I’m like Forrest Gump who does the same thing over and over.
And that’s okay because I like what I do. The first time we met our son-in-law’s parents, Bruce and Carol, was when they were visiting Chicago and we had them to our home for dinner. I served veal chops and Bruce enjoyed every bite. The next night we all went out for dinner and Bruce ordered veal chops. I guess we all looked at him kind of funny, because he looked back at us and said “I really like veal chops.” Isn’t that the beauty of being an adult? If you want to eat dessert before dinner—you can. If you want to eat veal chops every night—go ahead!
I don’t believe that it’s possible for Ailene, or anyone else to create enough change, to turn misery to joy. Sure, improving your circumstances can affect your quality of life, but the deep down happy—has to come from within. Could it be as simple as being comfortable in your life and doing the best with what you are given? It might be. Would it help to show more gratitude for the goodness you receive? I think so. Should connecting to God and exploring your soul be a part of your every day routine? I know it to be true.
Looked at the pile of bills
and decided to adjust my glasses.
Must be a great new job
coming to cover it all.
Looked at the bottles of pills
to fix my health woes
and re-set my compass.
Must be miracle coming in my body
to make me whole again.
Looked at the wars in the world
and opened my mind and heart
as wide as they would go.
Must be ambassadors of peace
coming to every village and people.
Looked at each thing I saw
as a problem and
gave it a new name: whoppertunity.
It’s a hell of a big pile of trouble,
but we’ve got You on our side.
—Ruth Williams, prayables.com