Saturday, December 12, 2009

Happiness or Joy

I have been pondering it lately. Happiness I think is a current state while joy is something intangible, but more permanent. If that is the case, people search too much for happiness and ignore the joy in a vain search to accumulate the
happiness to achieve joy. I just don't think it works that way.

My mind takes me on a journey. In this journey, I have no money and I am alone hundreds of miles away from home. I have to sleep under bridges and beg or raid trash
cans for food. I am struggling and very unhappy. However,
I know that I have a home. All I need to do is endure till
I get back there. I need to go home - home, where I have
shelter, food, friends and family that love me. Knowing
that I have that home waiting for me gives me peace - an
overall joy.

If my mind takes me away again on a similar voyage where I can
contrast happiness and joy. This time, I am still poor and
homeless, but I do not have a home anywhere, no family, no
anything. I am unhappy and unjoyful. But then, a stranger
comes up and gives me a $20 bill. It makes me happy
because the money represents food for a couple of days.
That is a great thing for someone in such shape. It makes
me happy. So now, I am happy, but still joyless. Joy is
more eternal.

When peace like a river attendeth my way

When sorrow like sea billows roll;

Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say

It is well, it is well with my soul.

~Horatio Spafford

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