Do not allow the perplexities and worries of everyday life to fret your mind and cloud your brow. If you do, you will always have something to vex and annoy. Life is what we make it, and we shall find what we look for. If we look for sadness and trouble, if we are in a frame of mind to magnify little difficulties, we shall find plenty of them to engross our thoughts and our conversation. But if we look on the bright side of things, we shall find enough to make us cheerful and happy. If we give smiles, they will be returned to us; if we speak pleasant, cheerful words, they will be spoken to us again.
When we appear as gloomy and depressed as though we are friendless, we give a wrong impression of what we are. In some cases the idea has been entertained that cheerfulness is inconsistent with the dignity of the character, but this is a mistake. Heaven is all joy; and if we gather to our souls the joys of heaven and, as far as possible, express them in our words and deportment, it will be more pleasing to us and our God than if we were gloomy and sad.
It is the duty of everyone to cultivate cheerfulness instead of brooding over sorrow and troubles. Many not only make themselves wretched in this way, but they sacrifice health and happiness to a morbid imagination. There are things in their surroundings that are not agreeable, and their countenances wear a continual frown that, more plainly than words, expresses discontent.
These depressing emotions are a great injury to them health wise; for by hindering the process of digestion, they interfere with nutrition. While grief and anxiety cannot remedy a single evil, they can do great harm; but cheerfulness and hope, while they brighten the pathway of others, “are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.”
We should never be gloomy, desponding, complaining? Loving the world, loving self, loving frivolous amusements, makes us timid, cowardly person. A hearty, willing service to God produces a sunny religion. We are blessed with peace and joy forever. When we live in selfishness we miss all these blessings.
It is not the will of God that we should be gloomy or impatient, nor that we should be light and trifling. We have to cultivate a cheerful, happy spirit, that we may show forth the praises to God.
If your heart is sad, let not your face reveal the fact. Let the sunshine from a loving, grateful heart light up your countenance. Smile young people, smile! Keep a pleasant countenance and melodious voice, be cheerful, not common and cheap, but be thankful and obedient. You are not at liberty to act out your feelings if things should arise that irritate. Educate yourself to carry a pleasant countenance, and bring all the sweetness and melody possible into your voice. Your harsh loud tones of fretfulness are not pleasant to anyone’s ears.
Cultivate a cheerful, contented, happy disposition. Every effort in this direction will be abundantly repaid in both the physical well-being and the moral character. A cheerful spirit will promote the happiness in a very great degree and improve your own health.
Look upon matters in a cheerful light, seeking to lift the shadows that, if cherished, will envelop the soul. Cultivate sympathy for others. Let cheerfulness, kindness, and love pervade your surrounding wherever you are and whatever you are doing. This will increase a love for religious exercises, and duties large and small will be performed with a light heart. We may have true dignity and at the same time be cheerful and pleasant in our deportment.
-Ellen G. White