looking for happiness

TIAABB. Do you know what that means?

It means:  There Is Always A Bigger Boat. We could say it lots of different ways.

  • There is always a nicer house.
  • There is always a prettier woman.
  • There is always better hair.
  • There is always someone with more money.


How about:

  • There is always a worse house.
  • There is always someone not as pretty.
  • There is always someone with worse hair.
  • There is always someone with less money.

This all came about because of a funeral I went to. It was the brother of my daughter-in-law’s. It was a big funeral, estimates coming in at about seven hundred. He died after a battle with cancer. He was only fifty-six. My daughter-in-law and he were very close.

But even with all the sadness I couldn’t help but notice how many “beautiful” people were there, men and women alike. I mean the clothes, the hair, the Spanxed midriffs, the jewelry, and the purses. Oh, and the shoes.

I wore a casual dress which if I’d had cool shoes would’ve been so much better. But instea, I wore my frayed and worn sandals. I simply have not had time to go out and find cool shoes with heels. Oops, just remembered, I do have a pair. I forgot I bought them because I’ve only worn them once. Now, I remember them.

Anyway, it doesn’t matter anyway. Because this post really doesn’t have anything to do with shoes.

It has a lot to do with comparisons. Boy, are we quick to do it. At least I am.

Then I came home and came across that acronym, TIAABB.

I don’t even know why I was comparing myself to them. I’m as content with my life right now as I can be considering my mom died about a month ago. Maybe it’s because I think I should care more about such things than I really do anymore.

Besides envy has a pecking order. Did you know that?

There is the top-level. These are the people you think couldn’t possibly envy anyone else because they already have it all. And yet even with them, there is someone who has a bigger boat.

The hierarchy continues on down.  Most of fall somewhere in the middle.

No matter what level a person is on there are those below them envying what they have. I have a wonderful plaque in my bathroom with the words:

“Someone else is happy with less than what you have.”

But let’s not make the mistake thinking that all poor people are happy and are wealthy people are unhappy. That’s ridiculous but we do it all the time. There is nothing noble in being poor any more than there is nobility in being rich.

The point is we each have to find what makes us happy. That might take some serious looking.

looking for happiness

And it’s never about things. It’s almost always about people and experiences. The joy of acquiring things doesn’t last that long. It’s amazing how quickly the charm fades. My first cup of coffee in the morning makes me happy; my second cup not as much, and so on.

So often we try to justify our envy by saying, “Well, I could’ve had my hair done. I could’ve bought an expensive purse and shoes, I could have had a pedicure and manicure, etc.” But I didn’t. Why? Because those things don’t bring me joy.

What did bring me joy was hitting some garage sales earlier in the day and finding some things I could really use.  What brought me joy was showing up at the funeral for my daughter-in-law. What brought me joy was knowing I had prayed consistently for this family for over two years now. And that maybe, just maybe, that’s one of the reasons he made it as long as he did.

The next time you’re tempted to compare yourself with others remind yourself that someone else is probably envying you.

Our pastor mentioned a book by John Ortberg that I read a few years ago, “It All Goes Back In the Box.” I highly recommend it. It is just another way of saying you can’t take it with you, it all goes back. We take nothing with us when we die but can leave a lot. And I’m talking about money.

Anyway, take it easy on the comparisons. God bless and have a good day.














igger boat.