After one of my sessions at the CHAP conference last week, a 10-year-old boy came pushing his mom up to meet me. His mom, Beth, was in a wheelchair and I could instantly tell by that and the hat she wore that hers was a story of great pain and suffering.
She told me that she’d been diagnosed with leukemia a year ago and had gone through extensive treatments. I asked her more questions and discovered a little of just how intensive and intrusive those treatments had been. She’d been unable to do much to care for her family (she has seven children!) and she’d experienced unimaginable pain and suffering.
As she shared her story, though, the joy in her heart — even in this very difficult circumstances — was so evident. In fact, she wanted to come meet me to tell me thank you for my blog as it had been a lifeline for her in the midst of all she was going through.
My heart broke for Beth’s pain. At the same time, though, I was deeply touched that she could still be smiling and joyful.
Even when everything was so hard, even when they are really struggling financially (they’ve hired a full-time nanny–something that has been a blessing, but it’s also drained their budget), even when she doesn’t even know if she’s going to survive… in spite of all this, she was still smiling.
Truly, you can’t always change your circumstance, but you can always choose your attitude.
May I encourage you today in whatever you are facing to choose joy? Choose to smile. Choose gratitude.
It might not change or fix a difficult situation, but I promise that it will make it more bearable.