When I saw this picture, it spoke to me.
Free you heart from hatred. Freeing your heart from hatred is so up lifting. It’s easy to hold onto hatred, but what we don’t realize is that hatred takes so much energy. Why waste that energy when it could be spent on something else? Think about how much time it takes when you think about your hatred. How does it make you feel when you think about it? Angry? Confused? Think of the things you hate and learn to forgive them, love them and move on. You will feel a huge weight off your shoulders.
Forgiving is not just a one time thing. Forgiving is a daily thing. Those feelings of hatred creep back up. It’s going to happen, so be prepared and know that you will have to free your heart from hatred again and again. But you will learn how to do it better and feel the relief afterwards. Once you remove hatred, then happiness can fill that void. Happiness, it’s what your heart wants.
Freeing your mind of worries. This is a hard one for me. I’m a mom. Moms are supposed to worry about their kids, and house, and finances, and husband, and work and so on. I have been learning how to let these worries go and give them to God. He is really the only One that can handle that. Plus, he already knows how it is going to work out. So freeing your worries requires faith. I have to remain having faith in God that he is in control and he will make sure that my family is protected. Having faith also requires believing in God’s plan, regardless of where it may take you.
Live simply. Think of all the things you want. Of course there are things that we all want….but do we really need them? Do you really need a 4000 sq. ft. house with 3 living rooms and 5 bedrooms when you have just 2 kids? Living simply means prioritizing your life. It might also require downsizing. Some people have mortgages they can barely afford but they keep that house because they want too look like they have this wonderful rich life, when they are actually in financial ruin. I only say this because I have lived it myself. During my 11+ years marriage my husband and I decided to be simpler. Live within our means. WITHIN. That’s a hard word for most.
We moved 2200 miles away from our home state and had to downsize to a 3-bedroom house. We have 3 kids. My 10-year-old son and 17-year-old son are sharing a bedroom. We had to get rid of a lot of things in order to move. And once we got here, I feel ok about it. We didn’t need that stuff. Once our 2 oldest kids head off to college, we have already decided to downsize again to a 2 bedroom. We want to live simply. Now I’m not saying get rid of everything and move into a tent. But simply look around and think, do I really need this stuff. Or the next time you go to purchase a house, furniture, appliances, etc…ask yourself do I really need it? Simplify.
Give more. How many times have you given more? I’m not just talking about to family or in relationships, in which you should, I’m talking about to strangers. Have you had a person in front of you in a drive thru buy your order? Have you done that for others? How does it feel when you donate your time or food items at thanksgiving to help those that are needy? I am a generous person. I always go above and beyond. I do this because it makes me feel good. Not to toot my own horn, but I have bought meals for others. I hate seeing elderly people eating alone at a restaurant. Whenever we get our check, I ask for theirs also. It just breaks my heart.
I do these things in front of my kids also. I want them to see what it looks and feels like to give to others. I want to be that example for them. I surprise my husband with this also. One time my husband and I were at pizza hut and an older lady came in by herself. My heart was breaking. I asked the waiter for her check and to also get her a $20 gift card. Something in my heart said to do it. When we got to the car my husband looked at me astonished. I asked him why and he said that you are so generous, I would have never thought of doing that. Like I said, it makes me feel good. You just don’t know when that might have made someone’s day. My proud momma moment came just a few weeks ago when my oldest son came home from work. He works at a very popular fast food restaurant. A lady came in and didn’t have enough to cover her meal for her and her kids, and he pulled out his bankcard and paid for the whole meal. I felt pride. Maybe my kids DO actually see what I do.
Expect less. I am a simple person. It drives my husband nuts. When it comes to Christmas time, I never really want anything. I know he wants to get me something, but I really don’t need anything. I’d rather the money be spent on getting stuff for the kids. Again, that goes back to being simple. I like to be simple. It runs in my family.
By doing these five things it begins to help your heart accept happiness. True happiness comes from within. And if these are things you struggle with try working them out and watch how happiness fills those voids. It is something that I am working on myself.
Tell me your thoughts about this. Tell me of your generous times or times of hate and how you have over come them. I would love to hear from you.