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Summer Reflection: Choosing Joy

Associate Grace Mendez celebrates her birthday with great company and good food. 

Don’t you just love summer? Barbeques, baseball, vacations! Now that I am mostly retired, other seasons feel like summer! But nothing beats the long sunny days of June and July! I am grateful for the means and opportunities to travel and see friends and family.

Where was I going with this? Oh, no, distracted again! Does that happen to you? Starting a project, then some other thing sends you down a different path? That is a metaphor for my life: starting one way and ending up having something send me down another. And it all has to do with choices.

How do I choose to treat the distractions that come my way? It has taken me a while, but I choose to treat them with gratitude and joy. (See, I found where I was going with this!)

I believe joy and gratitude are choices I make every day. I can let the lady in the 10 items or less line with 30 things as an annoyance or as a chuckle. I can choose to rejoice in the new life when the baby cries in church or I can choose to criticize the parents. I can choose to smile at the man with the sign or choose to ignore him. I can complain about the humidity, or I can thank God for the gorgeous sunrise.

Am I always sunny and cheerful? Of course not! But I can send good vibes into the cosmos with my choices or I can make my day (and the day for others) a misery by constantly complaining. Choose.

Choose joy; choose gratitude. Enjoy the summer!

This Post Has 7 Comments
  1. Lots to think about here. Basically , the 12 Steps cover it pretty well. Not without opportunities to grow. AFOG. Thanks!

  2. You know I’d love this Grace. Here’s to joy and more joy. As Teilhard says “Joy is the most infallible sign of the presence of God.”

  3. Thank you, Grace, for gracing us with your reality check. Choices we make can make or break us. And yes, we pass that on to others. Your picture says it all. Be joyful and celebrate the gift of life!

  4. Thanks, Grace. Your photo is a delight and your remarks are stirring. Joy can emerge in surprises.
    On the way to the parish office this morning I stopped for gas. At that station there’s a staff member in a
    little “box”. Out stepped Kathy to greet me. Her mother and I were friends and Kathy says I evoke
    memories of good times with with her mother, now deceased. Before leaving the station a commercial van blocked me and offered me a free bouquet of flowers (a simple give-away!) The flowers brighten our work day.
    Joy be yours, Grace!

  5. Dear Grace,
    Loved your emphasis on choices of joy and gratitude! Also your picture of joy and gratitude! Blessings, Roberta

  6. Thanks, Grace, for sharing your reflection. Recalling my opportunities of being with you I find your words to be very authentic. We need more of you around.

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