Happy is a relative emotion. When we are happy, it might be said we are comparing, perhaps to those times when we are not so emotionally and mentally positive. Often, my mind ponders the ideas surrounding happiness and joyousness, and their cousin contentment. I want joy, and pursue the truths and outlooks that produce it as their fruit.
Joy and happiness are both perspectives and internal states of mind, heart and spirit that can be affected by our experiences, but are not necessarily dependent upon them. Joy, and even happiness may depend more upon choice than on environment and events of life. I contend that although we cannot choose whether we have lupus, we can choose the attitude we will have toward it.
New is a hopeful concept. Fresh, youthful, shining, unmarred, unspoiled, promising, uncharted, undetermined and forward-looking. With lupus, at times I feel anything but new, and many times feel physically older than my chronological age. Age brings us to the third word of the annual greeting, Happy New Year.
Age is a measure of the time we live, the years that have passed. Time should be redeemed, savored, invested and used for what matters the most to us, and for what will yield the most important results. Time is a precious commodity made up of instants, eye blinks and passing moments.
These tiny increments of time add up, one upon the next to become years, until the accumulation of them becomes our present age. Will this new year ahead be a happy one? Only time will tell. After the passing of many minutes, hours, weeks, months and days, we will have a whole new year completed once again. How will the new year ahead be summed up when we look back at it on the cusp of 2015?
My hope, prayer, resolution if you will, is that in retrospect it will bear the fruit of having chosen joy, fresh perspectives and the redeeming of the passing snippets and tidbits of time that passed. Joy is an outlook of strength.
By God’s grace, I hope to view the year ahead as a truly joyous fresh experience in time, an opportunity, an exciting adventure and a happy new year. I hope throughout the year ahead, that I will honor the One true God and my Savior who is the source of my greatest joy.
I am in hearty agreement with the ancient Hebrew prophet who said, “the joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10).
Today, despite my lupus, and every other challenge I might face in the daily adventures ahead, I choose joy!