Tag Archives: how to be happy

The Secret To Life

To me, one of the verses taken out of context the most is Philippians 4:13. We mainly see athletes with it proudly proclaiming that they can do anything through Christ. I’ve heard people use it when they are taking a test, doing something they don’t want to do and when facing insurmountable odds. It sounds great, and it builds confidence, but what if that wasn’t what Paul was talking about? What if Philippians 4:13 is actually the secret to living a life that isn’t rocked by every storm you face?

If we back up a few verses, that’s exactly what we find that it means. Paul wasn’t telling us that we can do anything like win a game or pass a test. He was telling us that we can be content and confident no matter what we face. We can learn to be self confident through Christ in us to make us equal to whatever life throws at us. We don’t have to live a life where our happiness is dependent on how good things are going or how much money we make or how many things we own. The secret to life is being content no matter what.

How is that possible? You can live that way through Christ. I like how the Amplified version breaks down Philippians 4:13. It says, “I can do all things [which He has called me to do] through Him who strengthens and empowers me [to fulfill His purpose–I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency; I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him who infuses me with inner strength and confident peace.]” You and I are to find our strength, confidence and contentment in Christ. Our ability to fulfill our purpose doesn’t have anything to do with our physical conditions, but rather our spiritual condition in knowing who we are in Christ. That’s the secret to life.

Photo by Jill Heyer on Unsplash

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The Pursuit Of Happiness


The Declaration of Independence of The United States says that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are among our inalienable rights as humans given to us by God. We all have the desire to live, to be free, and to be happy. So many of us have spent a lifetime in the pursuit of happiness. We think of we have more money, we’ll be happy. We think of we had a better job, a better house, a faster car, more friends, a bigger church, more toys, or (fill in the blank), we’ll be happy so we pursue those things.

The inalienable right granted to us was the pursuit of happiness, not the pursuit of things though. Yes, God wants you to be happy, but He wants you to find it in Him. If you’ve pursued things to make you happy, you can attest that once you had those things, your happiness faded. They fulfilled you for a short while, but then you wanted a better whatever it was that you pursued. When you pursue things for your happiness, you’ll never be satisfied. You will always want more. That’s why we have the phrase, “Money doesn’t buy happiness.”

The pursuit of happiness is different than the pursuit of things to make you happy. You can still desire those other things, but you have to understand that’s not what’s going to fulfill your longing to be happy. Psalm 37:4 says, “Seek your happiness in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desire” (GNT). When we pursue our happiness in God, a funny thing happens. He begins to give us the things we desire. It’s a matter of priorities.

Jesus said it this way in Matthew 6:33, “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (ESV). It’s when we seek Him, His Kingdom, and His desires that we will find our happiness. All the other things are a side note to life. Yes, it’s ok to want them and to even have them, but we have to understand that if they are what we are pursuing to make us happy, we I’ll be disappointed. If we will seek our happiness in Him, we will be truly happy and He will bless us with things that will enhance our happiness.

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Finding Happiness

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I enjoy this time of year. As much as I joke about it, I do like reading people’s Facebook posts of what they’re thankful for each day. About this time in the month though, most have quit doing it, a few will post the last several days together and some remain faithful to it. I believe that being thankful changes your perspective in situations. It takes your eyes off of what you don’t have to what you do have. If you’re constantly wishing you had more without being thankful for what you have, you will never be happy. You will never be satisfied in life and it will be a long, bumpy ride.

I saw two different children in Haiti that really got my attention. One little boy was running down the side of the road. He was pulling a string that was attached to the neck of a water bottle. There were two pencils stuck through the side of the bottle with bottle caps on the ends making wheels. He had a huge grin as he pulled his homemade car down the road. Another child I saw had a stroller wheel with a stick in it. He ran around holding that stick and pushing that wheel wherever he went. It looked like it was his favorite toy. Both kids were satisfied with what little they had. Both kids were thankful just to have a toy.

They both know that there are better toys out there in the world, but they’ve chosen to be satisfied with what they have. That’s the secret to happiness. I’m not saying you shouldn’t want to improve your life, have a better house or a job that pays more. I’m saying, learn to be content and satisfied with what you have right now. Don’t get caught up in the lie that says, “If only I had ________ I’d be happy.” Being satisfied and thankful for what you have right now is a choice that only you can make. Things should never control how you feel. I say that as a person who knows what it’s like to have everything I want and as one who knows what it’s like to have nothing.

When we allow things to control our happiness, we lose sight of God. We are telling Him that what He thinks we should have is not enough. We are telling Him that He is not a good provider. Once we learn to see that the things we have aren’t even ours, but rather they’re His and we are just stewards over them, we can learn to be satisfied and happy. God’s message is different than the world’s. It always has been and always will be. Therefore, as God’s people, we should live our lives differently too. We shouldn’t be worried about the things we don’t have, but rather we should be thankful for what we do have.

There’s an old hymn that says, “Count your blessings one by one. Count your blessing, see what God has done. Count your blessings, name them one by one. It will surprise you what The Lord has done.” That’s the thought I want to leave you with today. Count your blessings today and see what God has done and where He’s brought you from. You’ll have a lot to be thankful for, I’m sure.

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