When Choosing Joy Is All You Can Do

I had been dreading the task of mopping my floors for weeks…probably longer! My floors looked absolutely horrible and I was totally embarrassed at the thought of family coming over and seeing them. After all, they would think I was a horrible housewife if my floors were dirty wouldn’t they? I mean, that’s the first thing I look at when I go into someone’s home…the state of their floors. (Yes, that statement is filled with sarcasm!)

It wasn’t only the fact that I wanted to have clean floors for our family. I wanted clean floors for myself! Cleaning may be my least favorite household chore, but I always feel so much better when the task is done.

I finally decided that enough was enough. I put Dalton down for his nap and raced to the kitchen to start my dreaded task so that I could get it done. I had turned a podcast on to listen to while I worked but it was now being drowned out by the conversation going on in my head.

You see, I can be analytical sometimes and this was one of those moments. I was trying to figure out why I dreaded mopping so much. I mean, it wasn’t like I was on my hands and knees cleaning the floor like they did back in the day. For crying out loud, I had a steam mop that made the entire task much easier.

I guess my inner struggle went back to the counseling I had years ago when I learned that I need to dig deeper and figure out exactly why I am feeling a certain way.

The truth of the matter was that I didn’t want to clean the floors because I hate our kitchen floors. The linoleum is probably original from when the house was built years ago. It’s old and ugly. There, I said it!

As I started to throw a pity party for myself about having ugly floors, the Lord reminded me of a situation from years past.

It was a Friday night and I had come home from work exhausted. It felt like all I ever did was work…probably because I did. After all, it was the only way I could make ends meet.

My Friday night chore was to mow the grass. It was like clockwork and every Friday after work I’d hop on the mower, weedeat, then crash for the night.

As I hopped on the mower this particular Friday night I started to throw a pity party for myself. Sure, I had every right to throw a pity party. Life had been tough since my then-husband left me for someone else. I had been working 2-3 jobs for what seemed like forever just so I would have enough money to make the house payment. I was exhausted, both physically and mentally!

But in the midst of my pity party and complaining about having to mow the grass it hit me like a ton of bricks. There were a ton of people that wished they had grass to mow or who were in situations 10 times worse than mine. These people would likely give anything to be in my shoes, as terrible as they felt to me.

After that particular Friday night I purposed never to complain about mowing my grass again. When I didn’t feel like mowing my grass I would hop on the mower anyways, choose joy and thank the Lord for the grass He had given me to mow. Choosing joy made a huge difference when it was time to mow each week.

As my mind drifted back to the present situation at hand and mopping my floors I decided to, once again, choose joy. My floors may no be the prettiest around, but I would be thankful that I have floors to clean. I would also be thankful that there are feet that tread on the floors to make them dirty.

Choosing joy made mopping the floors a lot easier that day. (Now if I could just get on a weekly routine so they wouldn’t get to the nasty state where I dread cleaning them.)

Perhaps you find yourself in a situation that, well, stinks. Life is unfair right now and you wish it was different. Sister, you’re not alone! But can I encourage you to choose joy. Find something, anything, to be thankful for. No matter what situation you find yourself in, there’s always something to be thankful for. There’s always someone who has it worse off than you do. There’s always a reason to choose joy!