You want to be happy. I want to be happy. Everyone wants to be happy, I mean, who wouldn’t want to be happy? The Declaration of Independence of the United States of America talks about “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” as being unalienable rights of humanity. What can we conclude from all of this? Happiness is a central objective and desire that belongs to all. Having said that...why aren’t we happy? Why are so many of us frustrated, disappointed and anxious about our lives? Why do we overeat, binge, eat chocolate, shop or do any number of other things to hide from our lack of happiness? Why can’t we just be happy? Why can’t we stop comparing, stop wishing, stop regretting, stop rationalizing and just start living today for the glory of it being our present? There is hope because happiness is attainable! We just need to know where and how to look for it and how to recognize it when we see it.
People want to be happy. They think about it, they talk about it and they do things do find happiness. The United States' Declaration of Independence speaks of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” Yes, we all want to be happy but have you ever thought about “joy”? Have you ever heard of people wanting and pursuing joy in their lives? Happiness and joy have several similarities in that they are both elusive and often fleeting. But joy, well, there is something profoundly special about joy. You see, joy is deeper than happiness. It can become a state of mind that unequivocally transforms you. Here is the catch – if you go looking for joy, you are actually pushing it further away from you. So, how do we find joy? Or more clearly stated, how do we let joy find us and change us in our every day experiences?
A few weeks ago we talked about worry, what it is, how it works, and most importantly, how to work through it. Well, today we thought we should look at worry's opposite, happiness! What makes us happy? Is happiness elusive? Are there different kinds of happiness? How, where, when and why do we find happiness? What about the Bible? Does it tell us to be happy and does it tell us how to be happy?
It has been 2,000 years since Jesus walked the earth with the good tidings of the Gospel. When he finished his work, he left the infant religion of Christianity in the faithful hands of the twelve Apostles. These men “prospered and grew” Christianity. So 2,000 years later, in a world that is mostly non-Christian and largely secular, is the work of the Gospel still “prospering and growing?" Are we now achieving what our Lord Jesus set out for us to do? Stay with us as we look at the cold hard facts of Christianity in the world today.
The world that we live in is tough. It is not only full of challenges to our convictions; it is full of diversions and distractions as well. We are overwhelmed with input, advertisement, chatter, emails, Facebook, Twitter, blogs, sports, entertainment, politics, work, leisure, holidays, events, traffic, weather, style, fashion, home repair, friends, family and life in general that to step away from it all and focus on pure and simple Godliness seems almost impossible. Yet, we as Christians are to pursue Godliness as a primary objective for our lives! Okay, now what? How do we do that? Stay with us as we examine the secret (well it’s really not so secret, it’s in the book of Titus), this formula for being Godly in an ungodly world!