Each day, human beings around the world wake up, eat, work, attend to family, and go back to sleep. The circle of life continues over and over again. However, we all search and ask the same questions. What is life for? Is this what I am meant to do? Am I living life to the fullest? Where’s the joy? How can I live “the Good Life”? Pope Francis in Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel) asks us to look at ourselves and the world with the eyes of Christ and to remain restless. “The restlessness of love always pushes to go and encounter the other, without waiting for the other to express his or her need”. Augustine said: “Our hearts are restless until they rest in God.” Rather than hide behind the trappings of power and empire, Pope Francis projects a sense that he’s an average man on the same life’s journey as us all. He’s the leader of 1.2 billion Catholics and yet he shrugs and laughs, and has said the most memorable line uttered by a pope in our time: “Who am I to judge?” He was asked about his secret to happiness. He said slow down. Take time off. Live and let live. Don’t proselytize. Work for peace. Work at a job that offers basic human dignity. Don’t hold on to negative feelings. Move calmly through life. Enjoy art, books and playfulness.

The poet Mary Oliver reminds us in her poem, “Don’t Hesitate”:“If you suddenly and unexpectedly feel joy, don’t hesitate. Give in to it. There are plenty of lives and whole towns destroyed or about to be. We are not wise, and not very often kind. And much can never be redeemed. Still life has some possibility left.  Whatever it is, don’t be afraid of its plenty. Joy is not made to be a crumb.”


This week:

·         Read Pope Francis’s encyclical Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel) which can be found here, http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/apost_exhortations/documents/papa-francesco_esortazione-ap_20131124_evangelii-gaudium.html

·         Every day this week write down something that made you happy.

·         Talk to someone who makes you feel joyful and happy- pay them a compliment.

·         Follow the 100 days of happiness project on facebook/twitter/Instagram. http://100happydays.com/

·         Remember, the happiest people do not have the best of everything, they make the best of everything.