So. Bottom line. We are not free from problems. Adding to that, many of us are said to have more than our fair share. And, yet, this is where choice comes in. On one end of the spectrum there is the choice to hold on to a negative attitude which then darkly colors one's existence. On the opposite end, is the choice of those who are cheerful and happy, even when the situation surrounding them is simply not. Ultimately, the choice is not about the situation, but rather our emotional response.
Henry Nouwen, in one of his morning meditations from Bread for the Journey, talks about Choosing Joy. He asks, what brings the joy that we so desire? Is it that some are lucky while others simply have none? Nouwen suggests that it comes in the choice. In fact, two people can be a part of the same difficult event but choose to live it very differently. One individual chooses to trust that what occurred, even in its pain, holds a promise. This promise cracks open possibility and opportunity that would not have otherwise been seen. The other chooses despair. This despair, which contains no hope, funnels down into the darkness of destruction.
Choosing gratitude is NOT about the denial of life's difficulties. Rather, it is an informed assessment that, despite problems or issues, life IS a treasure and it IS worth living. Making a choice pulls you out of that reptilian part of your brain built on the use of fear as a survival tool and into a more rational part that opens you into possibilities. The turning of your mind lets you lean into life. Accessing the wonderment of life opens you into the blossoming of abundance.
Gratitude is a choice. A turning to abundance. There is nothing to lose and everything to gain. So, go ahead, claim it!