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Found on FACEBOOK TIMELINE on 1-8-17. Khalil Gibran/rh

Found on Facebook Timeline on 1-8-17. Khalil Gibran/rh

Life is a mixture of both good and bad experiences. How we react to those experiences determines whether we experience happiness or a sense of peace in every year that passes. It is so easy to accept the good because we love things that excite us, attract our attention, inspire us, or comfort us. Babies make most of us feel good unless we are on a long flight over the Atlantic Ocean and a baby on board cannot be consoled and screams for hours. Growing older when we are young, excites us. Growing older when we are old tends to feel more unsettling and for some of us, down right horrifying. It all depends on how we see our experiences and how we choose to respond to them.

Accepting bad experiences tend to be much more difficult. Perhaps because they usually happen unpredictably, or when we need to meet a deadline of some sort, or they involve pain, sorrow, or discomfort. We are creatures of comfort and we like feeling loved, secure, joyful, and satisfied. We seek pleasure in our lives. We do not actively  search for pain, ugliness, loss, or betrayal, but those things seem to find us. We tend to react to bad experiences by complaining, grieving, and blaming God or someone else who is around. We get angry, struggle, use bad ways to cope, or we become overwhelmed with fear and refuse to let go of what we must let go of if we are to move forward in our lives.

The one thing we can do that can be helpful is to learn how to accept what is in this moment in time, to breathe, to slow our thinking, calm our impulses, give ourselves time to rest, and to let life flow. After a time, most problems get resolved without our interference, or we have built up our resources and energy to more effectively deal with the present issues. Sometimes we find that bad experiences can teach us valuable lessons, or deepen our relationships with others and God. Accepting the good with the bad is not easy, but life was never meant to be easy. The choices we make in how we react to the bad things in life can make our lives more tolerable and give us peace.