I want to be more joyful, less resentful

My life experience has been that pain memories are more intense than pleasure memories. That can be good–pain memories can serve as warnings not to do certain dumb things a second time. But they can also overwhelm and crowd out happy thoughts and leave you feeling blue.

Peter Pan wants people to think that happy thoughts can make them fly. Well, they can. Not literally, of course. But choosing to let your mind dwell on God’s amazing outpouring of blessings into your life can give wings to your spirit and help lift you out of an emotional hole. St. Paul agrees: “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Philippians 4:4)

The gospel of Christ makes us all optimists. The great enemies of mankind have been defeated: Satan, the old dragon, has been defanged. Now mortally wounded, he rages about but his destiny is fixed. Your sin was put in its entirety on Christ, and you bear it no more.

The grave is now only a resting place for your tired old body and will have to yield it up when the archangel Michael’s trumpet blows. Hell was experienced for you by Christ on his cross, and you will never know what its torments are like. Even death, that grim reaper, may look like he’s winning, but, in fact, the death of a Christian only means that your spirit has now fled into the presence of Christ.

The more you ponder Christ’s mighty work on your behalf, the more your soul rejoices.

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