Are You Happy Now?
This is the day which the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24 (ESV)
These words were written over 2000 years ago. In this time of the Corona virus and so much political unrest, they are truer now more than ever. It is so easy to get caught up in the worries of the day: whether we will get sick or not, how we will feed our families and keep our homes, and what is happening to our neighborhoods. In the United States, we are worried about the blatant attacks of racism and xenophobia that are increasing, and what will happen to the country if the election does not go our way. We are missing members of our family that we cannot visit, and we are worried about those who have been affected by this pandemic. Many of us have lost loved ones. Some days, it seems that there is just no hope.
But so much of what we face is in our minds. This is not to say that the pandemic isn’t real or that the political climate isn’t changing. They certainly are. But this is the time that we need to rely most on the teachings of the Bible and the wisdom of the elders. Happiness is something we all strive for, the end goal for many of love, marriage, and professional success. But even in the best of circumstances, with the perfect mate and the best job and salary, many do not achieve real happiness. Why? Because they simply are not ready for it.
Like anything else, we have to prepare for happiness. We have to want it and welcome it with open arms. A man can have the perfect wife who meets all his needs and still not be happy because he is looking for something more. A woman can reach the top rung of the career ladder in her company and still not be happy because there is a void in her life, a hunger, an emptiness that she cannot fill, whether it be a partner, a home, or a child. We all have to take a step back from time to time and ask ourselves, “What will make me happy?” “Am I doing what I need to do to get there?” “What do I need to change in my life in order to find true happiness?”
Look at these words by Joel Osteen.
“Happiness is a decision you make, not an emotion you feel. Never forget that although you might not be able to choose your circumstances, you can always choose how you respond to them. If you make the decision to stay full of joy, if you’ll choose to be happy in spite of your circumstances, the enemy can’t keep you down and defeated. God will give you supernatural strength to overcome every obstacle you face, and you will live that life of overcoming victory He has in store for you.”
So face each day, no matter what it may bring, with a conscious decision to be happy. Start your day with prayers and gratitude. Identify something that you are looking forward to. When the negatives ideas come in, send them away, or decide how you will conquer them. Remember that every single day is a gift from God. And many are not blessed to get another. So enjoy the blessing of each and every day, and make it count by bringing joy to others. Be thankful for the people you have around you: your family, spouses, friends, and co-workers. Show them that you value them.
This IS the day which the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.