Free to Say “No”

Don’t ever feel bad for making a decision about your own life that upsets other people. You are not responsible for their happiness. You’re responsible for your own happiness. Anyone who wants you to live in misery for their happiness should not be in your life anyway. Isaiah Hankel

Meditation: What is my happiness? The commercial world basically builds all advertisement on the premise that they know what will make me happy. I just need to buy their product, or take the expensive trip they offer or commit myself to a payment plan to get what they promise me: fame, success, exposure…How do I discern spiritually what truly makes me happy? Only I know what happiness means to me. And it might not cost anything after all. It might just be a short walk with my dog in the cooling summer air or a friendly encounter with my neighbor. Happiness might just be to write a reflection in my journal or watch my girls bake some cookies. Those who tell me what makes me happy do not know me. They assume that because I am a certain age, gender, class or have certain interests that they know me. But all they are after, is my money. Saying no to our society that tries to dictate what I should feel, want and desire is an important step towards freedom. And to me, freedom is the first step towards true happiness…

Prayer: God, you have set me free. My relationship with you frees me from cultural norms and ideals that are not even mine. Thank you that in your eyes I do not have to reach a certain success, a certain wealth or status to be somebody. You are the reason for my happiness, as your love and acceptance of me is a free gift. I do not have to buy it. I do not have to work for it. You free me from the temptation to listen to those who try to sell me “worth” and happiness. I am set free. And I am grateful. Amen

Let what you say be simply ‘Yes’ or ‘No’; anything more than this comes from evil. Matthew 5:37