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This week’s thought comes from Mark Twain:

“’On with the dance, let joy be unconfined’ is my motto, whether there’s any dance to dance or any joy to unconfine.”

To read Twain’s life is to see that he lived life as a dance with joy—even in small, everyday things.

Twain had a rough background and was known for his use of profanity, but his wife Olivia was from a very refined background. One day, Twain overheard Olivia in another room cussing about something—which was unlike her. In a letter to a friend, he wrote: “Olivia is trying to learn how to cuss. She’s got the words but not the music!”

Twain understood that two of joy’s greatest tools are a sense of humor and stories. He literally traveled around the world sharing stories and bringing joy to millions.

But note the second half of his quotation: “…whether there’s any dance to dance or any joy to unconfine.”

Twain also experienced great problems and tragedy including the costly failure of a business venture and the loss of his wife, the great love of his life. “Dancing with joy” didn’t mean there would be no problems, of course, but it did help sustain him.

In these difficult times, Twain reminds us that now, more than ever, we need to dance with joy, we need our sense of humor, and we need to tell the stories.

Tell the stories of the little things. Tell the stories around the dinner table. Tell the stories with friends. Tell the stories that bring laughter and refresh the spirit.

The more we get tired of dealing with the coronavirus, the more important it is to keep dancing with joy.

“On with the dance!”