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Our Best Life is RIGHT NOW - choosing joy + gratitude in each and every day



When do you think you have lived or will be living your best life?


Is it when you're married? Once you buy your dream house? When you're on a fancy vacation? After you get your dream job? When is it for you?


Maybe, for a lot of us, it's just when there's no conflict, no struggles, no pain (which often does look like a fancy vacation somewhere warm and tropical).


But - if that's the case, are we just floating, waiting around for "our best life"? Are we content going through the motions until we "arrive" at whatever the peak of our life is?


As I've been processing through a lot of my own struggles and toxic mentalities, I've realized so many things, some of which being:

  1. No one else's decisions need to influence my emotions or dictate my joy.

  2. I am not responsible for anyone's decisions.

  3. It's not my job to change anyone or to fix anyone else other than my own attitudes and behaviors.

  4. I am living my best life right now.

I could probably write an entire blog post for each of those points, but I really, really want to talk about #4.


I find myself often saying, "once summer comes, then my life will be awesome" or "if I could just PR, then all of the work would be worth it" or "I'll be proud of myself once *enter achievement here*". And while it's great to have goals and look forward to certain things, it's also really important that we live in the now and make the most of every moment.


The truth is, none of us are guaranteed a tomorrow. None of us know for sure that we'll be able to "live up" another summer, another season, or another opportunity. All we know is that we have been given this day, and this is the day that the Lord is made, so it is our job (and privilege) to enjoy it.


And I know that I don't want to waste whatever God has in store for me today.


I'm learning that yes, I'm allowed to feel sad, grieve, and acknowledge the anxiety I struggle with. But at the end of the day, it's my decision of what I'm going to do with those emotions. I can wallow and waste a day, or I can get up, process, heal, and feel the sunshine on my skin. I can feel sorry for myself and stay stuck in the hard things, or I can smile through the tears and find joy in the truth that God is good, and He's got me. I can wait around for a boyfriend, a job, or a million followers, or I can celebrate this season that I'm in and celebrate it.


I'm learning that my "best life" and making the most of every moment will look different every day. Some days it's getting out there, hanging out with friends and being my loud, cheerleader self. Other days, it may mean staying home, spending extra time prayer and laying on the couch because my heart needs a little extra rest. But it's okay. Ultimately, this "best life" way of living is about making the most of every opportunity, enjoying and appreciating what God has blessed us with, and choosing our attitude as we go into each and every situation.


In 2 Corinthians 6:4, Paul writes "in all our troubles my joy knows no bounds". He had faced imprisonment, beatings, public humiliation, yet he is known for his joy. Did his circumstances look like he was living his best life? Absolutely not. But did his heart posture, commitment to God, and daily decision to choose joy look like he was living his best life? Yes, yes it did, and that's what I want to learn from.


This "best life" mentality is a decision, not a feeling. Not every day will feel like it's the best one ever, and that's okay. But every day, I have the decision to choose to obey God's word, prioritize community, and take care of my heart. Every day, I get to make decisions that contribute to my overall health and both future me and the person I am today. Every day, I get to make the most of every moment, every opportunity, and make as many beautiful memories as possible. Every day is filled with so many gifts, so many blessings, and I don't want to miss it.


This day is a gift, and I'm going to choose to face whatever it holds with joy and gratitude. I want to be known for my joy, known for appreciating all the little things. And as I do this, not only does my heart change and become more content, I will be able to encourage the people around me in the process.

 

Our best life is right now, friends, because this is the one God has given us. Not tomorrow, not next week, not in ten years from now, but right now. I'm being challenged to approach each and every day with this mentality (ask any of my friends - they've all heard me repeat, "this is my best life") because I've learned that it is so important to appreciate everything that God has given me right now, and that choosing joy is so much better than choosing to wallow in all the bad things. I'm learning that good attitudes make good memories, and I'd much rather laugh and celebrate and find healthy ways to heal than isolate and harbor bitterness or jealousy.


I'm not waiting for a boyfriend, husband, job, kids, or success to define my best life. I'm not waiting to be joyful or content or grateful. I'm choosing those things right now, and lemme tell you, I am better because of it.

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