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sharing : I deal in hope

I deal in hope : Carolyn R Scheidies

Blog: Selflessness Key to Contentment, Joy

In October, Keith and I spent a week in Omaha helping out our daughter, mainly by watching our youngest granddaughter Ellery. Cassie was still working and, as the phrase goes, was “great with child.” Meanwhile, her husband Kurt who is a Navy Reservist had two weeks of training. We helped out the first week, while Kurt’s mom came to help the second week.

Ellery who will be 2-years-old January 30th is all go-go-go. She is also a happy child whose smile can’t help but brighten up the day. But babysitting even a precious granddaughter is exhausting. Cassie and Kurt also have a small, elderly dog Melvin who has to be taken out more often these days. Out means down the apartment complex hall, down the elevator and outside. Yet, the night hugs from Ellery before she was put to bed warmed my heart. Leaving at the end of the week was mixed. Glad to go home and sorry to be leaving. We left feeling we’d made a difference.

This fall, Keith’s Dad also decided it was time, with his health situation, to move from his home to Bethany Assisted Living in Minden. Before he moved, we spent much time in Minden with him and when it was time to move, we helped in the move. (Not that I was much help with the physical moving.)

In November it was back to Omaha when Cassie had her baby. All those things take time and energy. Then we have our responsibilities at church and, for me, responsibilities with Kearney Christian Women’s Connection. We’ve always been involved with church and community activities most of our lives, long before Keith retired in August.

Still, it seems our lives have gotten busier with family and other activities since he retired. Many believe they would be happier if they could do whatever they want, whenever they want. They would be happy if they didn’t have the drudgery of a regular, got-to-go to work everyday job. Many look forward to retirement as the answer to their dreams. Yet, too many discover too much time on their hands doesn’t make them happy at all. The reason? Humans need to know they have worth and that what they do matters. Work, volunteering, helping family and friends often brings, not anger and resentment, but contentment and the confirmation that we matter and our lives have a purpose.

The key to joy and contentment isn’t laziness and an all-about-me attitude, but a lifestyle that reaches out to make a difference to those around us. Want a Christmas filled with joy? Think beyond fancy presents and a too-busy schedule to figuring out whose lives you can help and change during the season. Joy and contentment comes from bringing joy to others.

It is a reflection of the love that brought Jesus to earth for you and me. Joy to the World! The Lord has Come…

By Carolyn R Scheidies

Read more of my life in The Day Secretariat Won the Triple Crown

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