In my line of work I tend to hear more negatives from people than positives - FAR more. People don't pop into my office just to tell me how happy they are or how great things are going. More often than not it's a pop in, close the door and let the complaining begin.
That's why I'm there, so I'm okay with that. The danger would be to assume, then, that everyone is that unhappy, troubled, miserable. They're not. There are people who are actually happy with their life - really - and I count myself among them. Is my life perfect? NO. Do I have everything I want? NO. But those intrapersonal observations don't have to be an obstacle to my decision to be happy. And I do think happiness is a choice.
"As Good as it Gets" was on this afternoon and this scene really got me thinking...
There are people with good stories, happy stories, "good times, noodle salad." Even if they don't find their way into my office, I choose to believe they are the majority.
My joy is a choice. I've had my share of trials in life - more than most, perhaps - but why would I let that dictate my attitude?
From a Biblical perspective, are there circumstances in the life of a Christian that should diminish our joy? We are commanded, "Rejoice always." In 1 Peter 4:13, it says, "Keep on rejoicing even to the degree that you share in the sufferings of Christ." Paul said, "Even though I am suffering I'm rejoicing." Is Peter saying that as your suffering escalates, so should your rejoicing? I should be seeing a whole lot more happy people in my office, then!