The Joy of Enough - Sunday, August 2, 2015
It has been said that when you compare yourself to others, two things can happen—and both are harmful: you may decide you are better than other people, or you may conclude that other people are better than you, which will leave you feeling unsettled, dissatisfied, and discouraged. As one commentator observed: “For some people, the pleasure of having something good is drained as soon as they see someone else with something better. Our sense of contentment is created or destroyed by comparisons. A life consumed with unfulfilled wants is an affliction. The antidote is the concept of ‘enough.’”1
It’s a common tendency to measure our self-worth by our possessions. But the world’s happiest people are not the most prosperous—they have simply learned to distinguish between needs and wants, between sufficiency and abundance. They still set goals, strive for excellence, and do their best to succeed. But their peace and contentment come more from what they give than from what they have. They know that “enough is enough.”
We all know such happy people; they’re found all over the world, in every social class and economic situation. We also know people who seem to have so much but remain unsatisfied. The truth is, we can never acquire enough of what we don’t really need. Endlessly searching and striving for more and better can lead to sleepless nights and unhappy days. The sooner we discover the joy of “enough,” the sooner we will find peace, even in the midst of life’s reversals and misfortunes.
One elderly woman learned this truth as she adjusted to her new home. It was much smaller than the house where she raised her family, but she grew to love the window that looked out on the courtyard. She became grateful for a smaller kitchen, fewer rooms to dust and decorate, but just enough space to welcome her loved ones. Her new home was enough to meet her needs, and she was happy in it.
Yes, improvement and betterment are vital, but bigger is not always better, and less is often more. Ultimately, the most fortunate people are not those who have what they want but those who want what they have.
-Lloyd D. Newell
1. Michael Josephson, “Enough Is Enough,” What Will Matter (blog), July 8, 2015, whatwillmatter.com/2013/06/commentary-commentary-833-2-enough-is-enough.
Aug. 2, 2015
Broadcast Number 4,481
Mormon Tabernacle Choir
Orchestra at Temple Square
The Morning Breaks
George Careless; arr. Mack Wilberg
Spitfire Prelude, from The First of the Few
William Walton; arr. Dennis Morrell
When the Saints Go Marching In
Traditional American song; arr. John Rutter
My House, from Peter Pan
Leonard Bernstein; arr. Mack Wilberg
Standing on the Promises
Russell K. Carter; arr. Ryan Murphy