Thursday, July 13, 2017

Beginner's Guide to Joyful Living -- Day 13

No one can sustain a joyful state. Bad days are just part of being human. Yesterday was packed with challenges, and my pulse zoomed, fast and irregular, like a squirrel racing across piano keys. I wasn't sure if I could get centered enough to work on Day 13. I reminded myself that negative emotions, events, and people can be countered if I made a conscious effort to find sweetness in the world around me. And sweetness, as we all know, is a gateway. I played with Jasper, then reached for my "Grace Notes." Inside this worn, spiral book, I document moments that bless my daily life.

Every day I look forward to my Instagram feed, because it's filled with moments from friends' lives--from dew on a flower to a yawning cat to a sunset. Social media can motivate us to get off the sofa and go on a joy hunt with our cameras. 

It's a fact (and understatement) that life is unpredictable. We can start the day with good cheer, but we could bump heads with an Imp. If we are very, very lucky--and imp free--we can still get pulled down a rabbit hole. A fight, harsh words, hurt feelings--all of these things can derail our best intentions. 

 We may pray for a little bit of gladness, just a smidgen. We may desperately need something good to happen. My grandmother used to say that a desperate desire or need, if unfulfilled, can turn into desperation, and desperation creates desperate people. Have you ever known a desperate person to be even a tiny bit happy?

In the unknowable future, hurdles may very well lay ahead, but I believe that grace and joy wait for us, too. 

Today I will find a moment of grace and write about it.

The 31-Day Challenge


  1. so many important thoughts to ponder today...

  2. Great thoughts to consider for today, Michael Lee. The 31 Day Challenge sounds very thought provoking, indeed!

  3. Days like you had yesterday do become just that - our yesterdays...if we let them go.

  4. I hope you've found your moment of grace today.
    Another excellent piece. I love the idea of keeping a journal of "Grace Notes". I'm going to start one for myself. So much in my life for which to be thankful. It will be a good reminder to record them. Thank you, dear friend!

  5. I am going to start a joy hunt and a Grace note book. Thank you so much, I think we forget to look for all the good things that happen, even on a bad day.

  6. Thank you for the reminder to count our blessings, Michael Lee. I start one, and then forget about it. I need to be faithful in having a Grace Notebook.