Saturday, December 20, 2008

Am I Not As Happy as I Used to Be?

"The chief cause of unhappiness is giving up what you want most for what you want at the moment."

This truth, uttered by Zig Ziglar, resembles the question I try to ask myself often throughout the day. Is what I am doing right now the best choice I can make for our family?

Too frequently I am distracted into doing what I feel like doing when I have half a chance. After all, my children require much from me throughout the day, from the moment the first one wakes up in the morning. My time is not my own. I thought that it was my own before I had a family, but even then I was wrong. I'll have to give an account to God for every word, every action, every opportunity that I missed or took to do the right thing, the best thing.

Honestly, I would much rather go online and/or put my thoughts in writing than tackle the dirty dishes in the sink. But an orderly home that is welcoming to my family and others is more important. I know this, and putting my knowledge into action is not so natural and easy. Samantha's insights on this phenomenon certainly apply to me as well.

Even good things like helping others or giving gifts can become self-serving if I neglect more important priorities. In my zeal to accomplish something good for others (outside my family), I have let push the needs of my husband and children aside. Especially at Christmas I think this is a temptation for busy parents.

Focusing on my family doesn't necessarily mean I have to wear myself out with Christmas shopping or other activities. It may mean just the opposite. Perhaps the best gift to them for a holiday like Christmas is for me to slow down. If I let go of the extra activities and pressing tasks I'd like to do, there would be time to appreciate the blessings we already have.

So off I should go, to locate some missing toy pieces and shine my sink. Funny, those are the same goals I had yesterday.

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