“There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.” ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
Today’s quote comes from a Vietnamese Zen Buddhist monk, teacher, and author. If you truly take the time to contemplate what he is saying, it is very simple yet, at the same time, incredibly profound.
We often look for fulfillment in our lives: personally, professionally, and spiritually. We look for the “quick fix.” We look for the “magic bullet.” We look for what will give us what we want in order to feel fulfilled.
The only problem is, when we finally get what we want, we never really feel fulfilled, do we? We think that there is always something more, some other milestone, some other goal, some other prize, some other pleasure just waiting for us to snare. So we make plans to go for that. And what lies beyond that. And what lies beyond that. If that is not the recipe for complete frustration, I do not know what is.
“There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.” I think that this simple, yet eloquent, quote would be embraced by people such as Mother Teresa of Calcutta. She never looked for the “big” goal. She looked for the simple and, in the process, produced huge results. She would say, “If you cannot feed a hundred people, then just feed one.”
So many of us get lost in the desire to produce big, to achieve the most, to be recognized by all. In the process, we lose our bearing. We lose our very selves. If we want to find happiness, be happy. It does not take much to smile, to laugh, and to greet another with a smile and good cheer. If we do so, we transmit that happiness to the other person and receive it back in fuller measure.
I have said this so often but it bears repeating again. Growing in holiness is not about doing big things, it is merely about beginning. When we take the initial step, God takes our hand and guides us the rest of the way. If that initial step is over a rocky crevice, God takes our hand and lifts us over the obstacle. If that initial step meets us with force, God takes our hand and protects our soul. God will never fail us and He does not want us to fail ourselves.
Do not look for the big and mighty ways to make yourself a better Christian. Look for the simple, look for the plain, look for the authentic and then do it with confidence. God will supply the rest.
FAITH ACTION: Live your faith with confidence today and know that God will make up whatever is lacking.