Have you heard about the “Happiness Revolution”? It’s a hot topic, for sure! Just browse any book store and you’ll see countless shelves filled with the topic of happiness, how to attain it, attract it, keep it and develop it. There are even television shows about happiness. Just Google “happiness” and see what you find. I did as I was thinking about writing this post today. Happiness is apparently on everyone’s mind. So what does the Bible say about happiness? Here’s one passage on blessedness, which to my understanding would mean happiness.
Psalm 1:1-2Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers,but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night.
Here, we’re told some of the things to avoid doing and some things we should do that will make us blessed or happy.
not walking in the counsel of the ungodly.
not standing in the path of sinners.
not sitting in the seat of the scornful.
delighting in the law of the Lord.
meditating on God’s law day and night.
Here’s a scripture on joy
Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces.” Psalm 34:5
Experiencing joy is different from happiness.Joy is an internal feeling that isn’t based on any external happening. In other words, you may be experiencing a difficult situation such as; financial pressure, physical ailments or grief, yet you have joy because joy is an internal feeling and not related to the outer happenings or circumstances that you may find yourself in. If given the choice between joy or happiness, joy wins hands down. Trials will come, but joy will see you through.
What I am anxious to see in Christian believers is a beautiful paradox. I want to see in them the joy of finding God while at the same time they are blessedly pursuing Him. I want to see in them the great joy of having God yet always wanting Him.”~ A. W. Tozer
In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple.Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying.And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.”Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar.With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
He said, “Go and tell…”
Looking upon God’s holiness made Isaiah see how unholy and sinful he was. He saw his true sin condition in comparison to God’s purity, and was ashamed and humbled. As all of Isaiah’s sinful thoughts, actions and behaviors lay bare before the holiness of God, he understood that he wasn’t fit to stand in the presence of God’s holiness. God’s not only holy, he’s holy, holy, holy. God’s holiness sets Him so far apart from us, that to even be in His presence is a gift of mercy, from His grace filled hand. As Isaiah is cleansed with live coal, we are cleansed by the blood of Jesus. If not for that, we could never so graciously be used to serve, go or tell. God doesn’t need us to do His work; he chooses to use us. That is a mystery to me. When I one day am able to look upon the face of God and see the one that was pierced for me, I will know the full depth of His grace and holiness.
He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:8
I can visualize it now. A big beautiful tree planted by a stream. It’s lovely branches hanging over the bubbling stream, swaying like delicate lace gently in the wind. Sounds peaceful and inviting doesn’t it? This is the kind of tree you’d want to read and picnic under. This tree is beautiful! It has dark green lush leaves, not those ugly brown ones that are shriveled up, even during drought. Even during drought? Incredible! This tree doesn’t worry or fear when the heat comes. Fear or worry? Trees can’t fear or worry. What is this scripture saying? How does this relate to me?
Well let’s look at the preceding verse.
Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. Jeremiah 17:7
He in verse 8 is referring to those of us that trust and hope in the Lord. By trusting and hoping in the Lord our roots grow deep. We’re then able to stay strong during adversity. Notice it doesn’t say the tree had green leaves because it always rained – which for a tree is perfect weather. No, the scripture says even in drought it has green leaves. Always green leaves. Drought! That doesn’t sound very good does it? Especially a year of drought! A whole year without the benefits of refreshing, life-giving water flowing like manna. What a tree! Even though it’s not living in ease being watered frequently, It’s still bearing fruit! Matter of fact it NEVER fails to bear fruit!
We too can be remain fruitful and receive our daily nourishment from God’s word. His word will sustain us through our trials, tribulations and adversity. Adversity will come, but we can still bear fruit for the kingdom of God. Trusting God and remaining in His word deepens our roots and grows a strong faith in us, not shallow belief, but deep faith. What a lesson for us all.
Ran across this cute little novelty box of chocolates the other day and decided to part with three bucks to pick it up. I don’t know about any of you reading this blog, but I’ve been guilty of self medication with chocolate. Anyone else with me on this? It does provide a boost of energy and seems to pick me up a bit when I’m in a slump. Especially dark chocolate! I’ve learned to love dark chocolate over milk chocolate. Thanks to my dear hubby!
Only one thing about using chocolate as a drug: its temporary. It’s also just a cover up, somewhat like retail therapy, only in food form. It may perk up your mood, but after a while you’re back to square one and you need more. Hopefully not in the same day! It’s a band-aid, covering over what is going on underneath- just like the novelty chocolate band aids I purchased! Don’t beat yourself up if you’re guilty of this, most of us have used self medication in one form or another. After all, we all have boo-boos and we all have scars from hurts in our lives and unless we take them to the GREAT PHYSICIAN we are just covering them up with a temporary fix. And it’s not wrong to enjoy the pleasure of eating chocolate or shopping on occasion. Hey, we need to have little pleasures every now and again. The only time it is a problem is if it is becoming a smoke screen for something else and it’s keeping you or I from taking whatever is ailing us and turning it over to the Lord. Keeping us from laying it at God’s feet. The Lord wants to heal us from what ever is festering and not just cover over it, but cleansing and healing us from the inside out.
Psalm 147;3He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.
Tired of fighting your own battles! Turn it over to the Lord! He will make you strong!
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
I was delighted to see this over Disney World not too long ago. It was actually the highlight of my day. Having been to the Disney theme parks quite a bit (due to an annual pass), it was becoming not … Continue reading →