Don’t Take Things for Granted | Choose Joy

My blogging plan was to review Megan Whalen Turner’s Queen’s Thief series (which is awesome) today, but the air conditioner went out, and everything changed.

You see, I know I take some things for granted. I know that I’m fortunate in my religion, country, home, and family. I’m blessed to live in a time with plumbing. I know this, but sometimes it’s exhausting to be grateful all the time, and then you get busy, and then you forget…and next thing you know, the air conditioner is keeping your house at a cool 70 F, and you don’t think a thing about it as the temperature outside rises to the upper 90s.

Then your air conditioner stops blowing cool air, and the house temperature rises to reach the outside temperature, and you think, “I sure wish I’d appreciated this a day ago.”

The thing with taking stuff for granted is that you start to feel entitled to have those things. You think that somehow it’s your basic human right to have air conditioning (which, let’s face it, it should be). Then when something happens, you get all offended and angry because that thing you’ve always had is no longer there for you. Why don’t I have that? Shouldn’t I have that? I deserve to have that? But you don’t deserve that because there are very few things in life you are actually entitled to have, and even then they’re not guaranteed.

Maybe if we were more grateful for what we have, if we acknowledged our good fortune in even the small things—like sunrises and life and (yes) air conditioning—then when the hard stuff comes, it wouldn’t be a punch in the gut from which we can’t seem to recover. Maybe we’d start to feel less like we deserve all things and more like we should work for them. Maybe we’d stop depending on outward circumstances for happiness and start depending on that which comes from inside.

Choose Joy.

—A

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