(I just posted this but forgot the title so am re-posting. What can I say, I’m still on a steep learning curve.)
I was thinking about what I said in the post, “guilt-free laughter.” I want to add a few thoughts There is nothing wrong with enjoying our lives and the blessings that come our way even when others are not experiencing much good. After all, if God blesses, don’t you think he expects the receiver to enjoy the gift? It took me a long time to understand that myself. I used to feel so guilty and undeserving of any good that came my way. I’m beyond the feeling guilty part. However, I do believe there is a wrong and right away to share our joy.
I’ve thought back to my own life when I’ve been the one struggling. How did I feel when someone else shared something their good news when I was the one hurting, especially if it was depression? The truth is it depended on how the information was shared. There are some people who seem to act as though their good news is because they are somehow better, more deserving, special.Then there are those who handle their good news with grace and humility. They allow us the grace to feel good for them.
I was prompted by a personal experience a few years ago to look at this subject. I was chairing a meeting at our church a few years ago and I said that I felt really blessed. I gave God the credit but apparently it came across to someone in the group that I thought God had blessed me because I was special. That wasn’t the case at all. I was only feeling very grateful-not superior or smug. Even though my remarks were completely misconstrued, I learned a valuable lesson-
“Be aware how you share your good news”.
I have a dear friend whose husband passed away rather suddenly. It’s been over two years and I’m still careful about mentioning plans my husband and I might have. I don’t want to add salt to her wounds. I hope that example helps. Another example might be when someone receives a promotion and buys the house of their dreams.
How do we share our joy? It boils down to being sensitive to what others are going through (if we know it) and to edit our sharing of our good fortune.
When something good comes your way, enjoy it. Share it with those who will appreciate your good news. We certainly don’t do the world any good by keeping our joy to ourselves. Sometimes when we’re the ones in that “not so good place”, hearing how others are thriving and seeing their excitement is exactly what we need to give us hope that our own future might get brighter.
Sometimes just being aware of an issue is all we need to change our behavior. It worked for me. My experience made me far more sensitive to other people’s circumstances.
Here’s some questions. Have any of you found yourself in a situation when you weren’t able to feel good about someone’s good news? Was it how they said it? Or was it just where you were in your life at the time? Do you think we need to be careful how we share our good news?
I would love to hear your comments. I always respond.