The first time I read this quote it was captured in a Mary Englebreit painting with two little girls looking out the window at the world. The circumstances were the same for both girls yet one had a big, healthy smile and the other was a grump.
It is our choice to decide how we deal with our circumstances. We can allow them to pull our emotions down into the mud at our feet so we can waller in it or we can choose to think the best of the situation, or person, or circumstance, and choose to be happy. Happiness for me is letting go of those things I cannot change, and focusing on changing what is within my power to change, while living from a cheerful heart.
As a Christian, I have a book full of verses that instructs me with practical and faithful guidance about how to live joyfully regardless of what or who is pursuing me and wanting to steal that joy.
And, guess what? It’s not their joy to steal; it’s ours. And we have every right to defend it, and in most situations, to “defend it” is to maintain it with a cheerful heart. I pray and ask God to take that worry and release it to Him so I can maintain that peace. I choose to be as happy as I make up my mind to be.