Saturday, September 15, 2007

Happiness vs. Joy

Happiness is working two all-nighters this week to put a proposal together and landing the job and gaining a new client.... Joy is holding your young daughter in your lap and watching her fall asleep in your arms, quietly and unknowingly reminding you of what really matters!

Happiness is struggling patiently to teach your teenage daughter the intricacies of driving with standard transmission... Joy is receiving a hug of excitement from said teenage daughter when she finally masters the stick shift!

Happiness is spending the night out with your teenage son on a father-son macho outing of sorts and watching videos that Mom for sure wouldn't like (the pre-qualification for a good movie)... Joy is when you non-communicative teenage son (who usually feels grunts and groans are sufficient verbal skills) voluntarily says "Thanks, Dad" in audible clearly articulated sounds!

Happiness is watching your eldest go off to college her freshman year - a scared, insecure, timid, confused little girl... Joy is watching your eldest daughter return to college this year - a confident, in-control-of-the-situation, woman, whose eye-opening experiences of living away from home support have brought new understanding of gratitude for that home support!

Happiness is stumbling across an old picture of you and your wife pre-engagement (and contemplating all the thoughts and feelings and emotions of that period of time conjured up in that image)... Joy is still enjoying cuddling with her 26 years later!

Happiness is being grateful for a supportive wife and loving family... Joy is realizing that despite all of the pain and heartache and struggles and angst of being in a mixed-oriented marriage, there are no regrets and you would do it all over again!

is knowing the Gospel and the purpose and anchor it serves in your life... Joy is sharing that knowledge with new converts and feeling an overwhelming spiritual confirmation that what you are sharing and feeling is TRUE!

Happiness is coming to terms finally, without self-hate and maybe some measure of less personal angst, with being gay and still very much so attracted to men... Joy is... well, one may still working on that one...


Samantha said...

Happiness is coming to terms finally, without self-hate and maybe some measure of less personal angst, with being gay and still very much so attracted to men...

Joy is when you realize that it's okay to find beauty in members of one's own gender, to long for touch, to wish for closeness, but to realize that one day all our needs will be filled through the sacred act of the One who loves us more than any other--and that He understands those longings and wishes, because He has felt them.

Beck said...

Wow! Thanks for finishing my post with the most perfect sentiment. I wasn't sure how to end it. I don't know that I'm totally at that point, but what an awesome thought and goal.

I needed this! Thanks.

Kengo Biddles said...

Beck, thank you for this post. Thank you for seeing the difference between happiness and joy.

Samantha, you're still amazing. In case you were wondering. :)

Anonymous said...

"there are no regrets and you would do it all over again!"

this says it all; i've not reached that point, but it good to know someone who has

Beck said...

KB: Samantha IS wonderful and it is our honor and duty to keep reminder her of that!!!

SANTORIO: I think it needs to be said loud and clear to this community that one, like me, may be married, may still feel angst and confusion, may still desire that which cannot be fulfilled within such a marriage, and yet be filled in so many other wonderful ways as to have no regrets.

No regrets is a huge ultimatum. In my waffling life, I'm not saying that there won't be regrets (the next time I see Tim, for example), but that is how I feel right now, and it is my goal to continue feeling so.

Brady said...

Beck, thanks for this post. It was really insightful and inspiring. I sometimes mix up happiness and joy, and so I appreciate you drawing the distinction so clearly and eloquently.

Elbow said...

Happiness is having you as a friend!

Beck said...

BRADY: Thanks for voicing your thoughts. It's good to see you on my blog. Don't make yourself such a stranger!

ELBOW: ...JOY is having friends that truly understand you!