Life should be faced with enthusiasm

By Joan Clayton : Religion Columnist

Do you like to be around enthusiastic people?

I do!

My career of teaching little children brought me 23 little cherubs filled with enthusiasm every day for 31 years. They greeted me with hugs saying, “What are we going to learn today?”

The children passed their zest for living on to me. From a new puppy to a cat’s-eye marble, they came wrapped in excitement, enthusiasm and unconditional love.

Excited about life, their world continually filled up with simple everyday events. Just an added five minutes to story time brought squeals of delight. A new student brought hugs with welcoming hands and loving hearts.

Children are gifts to be treasured and we can learn a lot from their joyful spirit. Their incredible faith and humility stands out as a beacon for us to follow:

“Therefore anyone who humbles himself as this little child, is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven” (Matthew 18:4 TLB).

I wonder what would happen if we awakened with the child’s attitude of “What can we learn today?” What opportunities would we have to share the good things in life?

Who might we meet to encourage or to be helpful?

We met just such a person one day. Our car wouldn’t start. The lights went on and off. It made strange noises and the computer system seemed all messed up. A new battery didn’t help. We called a man with a tow truck, thinking about the cost it might take to be repaired. I admit we did not have much enthusiasm about it.

“Let’s have a look at it first. It might not be as bad as you think,” the enthusiastic man said. He opened the hood and said, “Here’s the problem. The cable isn’t touching the battery.” He fixed it and the car started up immediately. Emmitt tried to pay him for the service and the house call. “Oh no, he said with a big smile, “I’m just glad I could help you!” What a great guy!

I call enthusiastic people “world changers.” Why? They see the bright side of life.

They expect the good and look for it in every situation. Even in hard times, they keep their positive outlook. World changers take courage in who they are and visualize what they can become. They see life as a gift and share that gift with others with an appreciation of being alive.

I am convinced that what you give to life returns to you. I like to see how many people will smile back at me. A surprise phone call from a caring friend makes me happy. I feel love and joy when my husband whispers, “I love you!” I am filled with enthusiasm when a former student recognizes me. I get exciting about writing a newspaper column and I am grateful for the opportunity.

Whenever I kissed the top of my 92-years-young uncle’s bald head at the rest home, he burst with enthusiasm with a great big “Thank you!”

We have so many things to be enjoying in this earthly journey. It doesn’t take money, because blessings cannot be bought. Happiness can be contentment with what you don’t have. I’ve read many stories about winning the lottery. Most of them said later; they wished they had never won.

For a blessed life think big with faith in your heart and you will enter a new life of hope. Embrace those heavenly special moments and more will come to you with memorable blessings.

Your faith and belief in God are the greatest things you can ever have and that is something to be enthusiastic about!