Today I am focusing on joy, that is rooted in Jesus, not in my circumstances, not in the things of this world, not in the bad attitudes, not in my to do list, not from my past, not in the news, but from the Lord. He is always near, no need to worry about anything. So Lord, I ask you to open my eyes, so that I may contemplate the wonderful things from Your instruction (Psalm 119:18).
For a couple years now, I have been counting blessings and still do, it is a blessing to look back and to see God. Last year, I started to look for beauty in the everyday ordinary, just where I am, and that too has been a blessing. It opens my eyes to see goodness all around, even in this world, which can appear dark at times. It takes my focus off me and instead puts it on things from above, heaven-focused! However, now this book, The Happiness Dare, has me thinking about things that make me happy and where the happiness comes from. Some people think it is not good to be happy, that it's selfish to be happy. Well it can be, if the focus is wrong! He rejoices over us (Zephaniah 3:17)! However, God would not want us to be miserable, no He created us and said it was very good (Genesis 1)! We can learn a lot from what brings us happiness! So what are some things that make you happy? Here are mine right now:
- My Bible time
- family time with the hubby, oh and his beard
- sistas in Christ, friendships
- good books
- chips and salsa
- organizing makes me happy
- planners and planning makes me happy
- movie nights
- homeschooling and learning together
- pictures, photography
- arts, homemade gifts
- strangers smile
- fuzzy blankets
- back-roads, country, open-spaces
Here are some quotes from the book, that spoke to me:
"Happiness is an outward expression of an inward joy that is found in Jesus...a gift from a happy God."
"You'll find in Jesus the happiness you've always longed for."
"Pay attention. Savor the life God has given to you. Thank God for the good when life is beautiful. And fight hard to find the happy when life is brutal." Isn't that so true, fight when life is brutal, when life is hard, when I am having a bad day...but when I start to focus on something else that fills my soul, doing something to help someone, showing kindness to a family member, a friend, or even a stranger, it starts to change my mood! In turn, that helps that person, and it starts a ripple effect! That is what God desires for us! We can't be a light of Jesus and be miserable, that is not going to work! So find your happiness, and share it! Will it be easy, no, not all the time!
This from John Piper in her book "Happiness is part of holiness...if you tried to describe what it means to be a holy person and left out happiness in God, you can't do it. There is no such thing as holiness minus happiness in God. Happiness in God is the essence of holiness."
Jennifer Lee, the author, talks about how happiness is a choice, and I so believe that! So we need to stop comparing, complaining, and worrying. Look at who God created you to be and why, a unique masterpiece, to love and serve, to share the good news, now that sounds like happiness to me! But it's a choice!! God created the heavens and the earth, He created you and me, He created the entire universe! Then God said after everything, it was good! When God created man/woman, it was really good! God was happy obviously! So if you are having a bad moment, day or just need some encouragement, start with the Bible (get to know God), and then count your blessings, look at what brings you happiness, and fill your beautiful soul! Spending time with Jesus, makes life so much more beautiful, it will change your life!
|Yesterday, wasn't looking forward to grocery shopping, but we went together as family, divided and conquered and then celebrated with hot chocolate. Celebrating is happiness, the big and little things!|