Blog writing, much of the time, feels like an avenue for confession and that can be hard and humbling. That is this post for me, hard and humbling, but I’m hoping I’m not alone in these thoughts and possibly my journey may help a struggling sister or brother. I’m writing on the illusiveness of happiness because often I struggle to maintain it! In the past, on several occasions, Chad has asked, “what makes you happy?” I want to give the Bible loving answer but I find myself saying “order” . . . “order” makes me happy. Sigh . . . maybe because much of life is chaotic, out of my control and often doesn’t go as planned. I will sometimes say in the serious moments of life that if you’re having a bad day, go clean a bathroom! Back to that order thing again; that’s my go to, my comfort, and my control. I believe there is something more to happiness than what I’m doing. I know my JOY comes from the Lord – and that abiding in Him gives me the fullness of JOY despite my circumstances but my humanness longs for more! Gasp! I know, I said it – my heart wants more!! But why would I dare want more?
Why would I dare want more . . . because we are designed for more, but more of what? I will start here because many times my unhappiness is due to an over fixation on God’s gifts instead of the Giver Himself. Other times my unhappiness stems from the knowledge that this earth is not my home and I feel done with it! But let me be frank, more often than not,
“Preferring anything above Christ is the very essence of sin. It must be fought.”
I’m in a daily battle over my preferences. Anyone else? When my preferences are wrong my happiness is at stake. So happiness must be fought
We must ask ourselves what do we prefer more than Christ?
Self? Husband? Wife? Family? Career? Well-behaved Children? Beautiful Home? Associations? Material Possessions? Comfort? Social Media? What is it that keeps our attention more than Christ? Whatever it is . . . it is sin and the very robber of happiness. So,
I recently picked up a book written by David Dunn entitled “Try Giving Yourself Away” and the title had me intrigued! I thought, what does that mean “try giving yourself away” – I thought I was giving myself away but I’ve discovered I can do better. A couple of areas of intention are challenging my self-absorption and they may challenge you as well.
Are you a “
David Dunn encourages the habit of appreciation by being a
An appropriate answer brings joy to a person,
and a well-timed word is a good thing.
Obey your warm-hearted impulses
Creating the habit of giving on the impulse is hard for us because we are too busy and we literally leave little to no white space on our calendars for the Holy Spirit to prompt us to acts of kindness. We’ve even resorted to blessing people in the drive thru by paying for the people’s food behind us in line. I’m not knocking this act of kindness – I’m just saying we’re in the drive thru!! We’re actually in the drive thru of life with little time to act on impulse. When I’m spending time in God’s Word and He prompts me to make zucchini bread for my neighbor – I must obey this warm-hearted impulse or the opportunity to bless will be lost. Dunn states it this way . . . “You have to train yourself to obey given impulses on the instant – before they get a chance to cool.”
For when my impulses to obey the Holy Spirit cools my happiness is at stake.
The more I give myself away in obedience to the Holy Spirit the more God fills my life with JOY. That is where the promise comes in play from the
and He will give you the desires of your heart.
Preferring God to all the distractions of life will prompt my sensitivities to His calling of obedience in my