We all want it. We read articles, search for it in people, or buy one more thing that will finally make us happy… Till it fades and we need something or someone else to make us feel good about ourselves.
We are drawn to these people who seem to have mastered the art of happiness. They seem to have so much fun and are always, well happy! After all, fun=happy right?
Then tragedy strikes. You lose your job, or your loved one loses their health, or maybe you are just plain depressed… Whatever the earth shattering loss is, the “happy” people disappear and you feel abandoned and rejected. The hardest part is you are left wondering, where did the friendship go? I thought friends are supposed to be there in sunshine or in rain?
It’s hard to blame the person who chases happiness, because let’s face it, we all want to be happy. Yet the constant pursuit of happiness can also lead to unnoticed selfishness.
Sometimes when we are out there chasing a feeling, we forget about those who are truly in need. I love in Ecclesiastes Chapter 7: 1-4 (NIRV) shares:
“…People can learn more from sobbing when someone dies than from being happy when someone is born. So it’s better to go where people are sobbing than to go where people are having a good time.
Everyone will die someday. Those who are still living should really think about that. Sadness is good for the heart. That’s why sorrow is better than laughter. Those who are wise are found where there is sorrow. But foolish people are found where there is pleasure. “
We were made for community. We have never lived in such an individualistic culture, ever. Modern culture says self love/selfishness is equal to our own happiness. When people aren’t happy, they no longer stay and work things out. Now we are encouraged to just quit and start all over because, I am no longer happy.
How do we stay in relationship with others without sticking it out through the hard times? What happens to the marriages? Kids? Friendships? Our society as a whole? We have more people now that are on antidepressants, and suicides have gone through the roof.
What changed? Is it our own selfish desires that are letting our communities fall apart?
We weren’t made to carry our burdens alone. That’s why G-d created others to be His hands and shoulders to help us through those tough times. Quoting scripture to a person who is hurting isn’t enough. Nor is saying they should give their pain over to G-d and just deal with their suffering alone until G-d rescues them.
He sends us. G-d doesn’t just want us to read His word, but do His word. He sends us to be His comfort. He sends us to show His grace. He sends us to show His love!
Jesus and his disciples went out to the sick, lost, and to the dying. He went where the need was great. He didn’t shame people for their pain, and tell them to get over it. Instead he blessed and encouraged them with truth and love. Jesus did not come to teach us how to be happy. He came to show us the way of His Father. He was sent to show us the greatness of being a servant. Not the greatness of being served.
Are we supposed to walk around somber and stoic all of the time? No! I do believe that there is a time and a place for everything. When joy is to be had, we celebrate! When injustice is done, we feel righteous anger and shake our fists! When grief strikes, we weep. It is all about timing and yes, sacrifice.
My life has been filled with valleys and mountains. The people that I have found to be the most faithful, loyal, and trustworthy; are those that are there in every season of life. I know who I can count on, and that is priceless.
I have found true happiness isn’t in everything going right or fun 24/7. In fact, most happiness is quite temporary. That’s why people look to affairs, drugs, spending time coveting and working for what others have… The list goes on and on. Happiness is a feeling.
We should never be living life for our own feelings. G-d calls us to share in His love with gratefulness and a humble heart. When we are searching for our own happiness, you can be sure that there is hurt beneath our feet as we pass by those who need us in their tender moments.
Speaking as one who loves to laugh and feel good, I encourage you to love life to it’s fullest. However our happiness should never come at the expense of someone else. Especially when I know they are suffering and I have the ability to be an extension of G-d’s direct word.
Being happy is wonderful in a healthy balance. One of our goals in life should be to leave our selfishness behind and instead embrace selflessness.
I have found true happiness comes when giving and making a positive difference. Whether it be a kind word, a special gift, or just the act of listening, there I find happiness. When I see someone smile who has been in the depths of despair, I feel happy. Feelings are fleeting, but it’s our actions that define who we are.
How do you balance a being happy?
If this story speaks to you, please feel free to leave a comment below. If you would like to follow my blog, scroll up on the right hand side and click on Follow to get the latest posts! If FB is your thing, scroll on the right hand side and click on kellynickerson.com FB and Like! I value each comment with deep gratitude. Thank you for taking the time to read and feel free to Share with your friends!