Rejoice – Enjoying What We Have
We All Ride a Roller Coaster
I try to be transparent with what I share here. The more you can see me, warts and all, then the more likely you are to realize that success in business and life is attainable; that we all have flaws, shortcomings, and challenges we face. Steve Jobs, despite his incredible vision and gift for marketing, had big character flaws. Same with Bill Gates, and many others. Ray and Maurice McDonald didn’t have the vision to make their restaurant a household name; it took Ray Kroc to do that. We ALL have hurdles to face and have up times and down times.
I share that because recently I have been having a down time. For a variety of reasons, things have not gone well in different parts of my life and I have gotten down on myself and doubts began to creep in. When that happens for me, I go back and look for things that remind me to re-focus and think positive.
Warning: The rest of this post will have a decidedly spiritual bent to it. I apologize if it offends you; I do not apologize for who I am and what I believe.
I ran across this: I have a card I received at a men’s group meeting years ago that I keep around. It is shaped like a stop sign and, in fact, on one side looks like a stop sign. On the other it carries this verse from the Bible, specifically from Philippians 4:4-7:
“Rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS (emphasis mine)! I say again, REJOICE! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”
Changes in Attitude
For me, of course, it is a reminder of where I have put my faith and my life. It is also a reminder that no matter what else I have things I can take great joy in throughout my life daily.
Let’s expand it beyond and see what we can find for everyone. When we have an ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE, we are better able to keep things in perspective. When we rejoice in the things we have that cannot be taken away, that the world cannot touch, then we provide a solid base for how we regard everything else that happens in our life. Once we have that perspective and are thinking in gratitude, therefore thinking positively, then we are better equipped to handle the crisis and not only survive but come out ahead. Zig Ziglar often said
“The more you express gratitude for what you have the more you will have to express gratitude for.”
Adopting the principle of rejoicing yields big returns; perhaps not always in the way we expect. Certainly, we all wish we had more money, more resources, more opportunities, more clients, more of whatever is on our mind right now. Yet when we rejoice in what we do have, we see that not only do we have a full cup but that it actually overflows. On the other hand, when we focus on what we don’t have we can lose what we do have. I remember years ago watching a comedy sketch where a man asks another man who is holding a cup of coffee for the time. The second man turns his wrist to look at his watch and pours out his cup of coffee. Like the man, we lose focus on what’s in our hand to look at something else.
What would your life be like if, for say at least a week, when someone asks you how you are you respond with “I am rejoicing!” Don’t reflect on what people will think about you, center on what it will do for you. Certainly it would be hard to say that continually and be negative.
I am going to try that for the next two weeks. I invite you to try it with me and let me know how it goes.
- Begin a gratitude journal. Get a notepad or journal or use an online one like Penzu. Every day for at least a month, write down at least one thing you are grateful for. Each day you have to enter something you have not previously added; in other words, each day is unique. Look at the list often.
- Respond to any greeting of “how are you” with “I am rejoicing!” for at least a week. If someone asks you why, use the gratitude reason of the day or some other response if you wish.