THE SECRET PLACE
Hurt me with the truth and never comfort me with a lie
HAPPY – HAPPY – HAPPY
Are you happy? If you are not, would you like to be? Of course! Is that not what everyone is trying to find? Happiness has always been a hot topic because the flesh loves to be fulfilled and content. Unfortunately there is a problem – the flesh only seeks within the temporal realm and the appetite of the eyes is never satisfied.
Scholars and experts that write about happiness usually have many readers because it seems we are all curious as to finding it and keeping it. The subject is as old as time and those who study human behavior agree that happiness is NOT something we can attain through an outside substance or circumstance. In other words – what things can do or what people can do for us alone, CANNOT make us happy for the long-term! But, things and people can “add” enjoyment to our life IF we have the sense of well-being that comes from a Godly attitude. I am sure that most all of us have dreamed of things that we sincerely believed would fulfill the deep longing in our heart and bring us contentment. However, when we finally did obtain it, we enjoyed it for a while but sadly realized it did not quench our soul.
Many famous people in Hollywood have confessed over the years that becoming well-known and very wealthy were visions that came true but these things could never fill the void of loneliness and depression that followed them. Mansions and expensive vehicles only bring temporary pleasures and thrills. Relationships with the “beautiful people”, outrageous jewelry, traveling around the world and collecting the treasures of kings and princes have actually made some individuals more miserable than they were before. Remember that King Solomon had everything and was very depressed as he said that all the riches of life were nothing more than “vanity”. It is common for people to NOT be able to comprehend WHY they are so SAD and become addicted to painkillers to dull the pain of this deep disappointment. Happiness eludes the poor the same as the rich because humans try to substitute spiritual needs with earthly solutions. So, where is true happiness? Well, the philosophers and psychologist can write libraries about theories and therapy programs, but when it comes to absolute truth, we always end up sitting at the table with God. Have you ever noticed that when things are going good, we keep God and His Word at a distance because as long as we can turn the steering wheel, we feel independent enough to make our own decisions? However, when we are facing a severe crisis that brings us or someone we love to the edge of eternity, we feel tiny in the vast universe of divine reality and we agree to at least listen. Ok – here it is – Happiness is NOT what the Christian is searching for! What in the world do you mean? When we take a closer look, we see that happiness is actually a shallow emotion that is experienced when things are going “our way”. Being happy depends on circumstances and situations and we all know these tend to fluctuate. So, we are not going to base our eternal hope on the shifting sands of a temporary sense of wellbeing. You see, those who are NOT spiritually born-again can only experience this level of mental contentment because they do not have spiritual security. Emotional happiness depends on things like good health, lots of finances and what people say and think about us BUT when life is NOT going well – these individuals are definitely NOT happy!
So just what are we really trying to find? I am glad you asked. It is a gift from God called JOY and it is a strength that only comes from knowing Him personally. Joy is the deep, spiritual contentment even when things are not going perfect. In fact, joy can be experienced in the darkest prison and when life brings the raging storms that would try to destroy us. There can be genuine joy when we have been diagnosed with a fatal disease or when our loved one is dying. God’s joy gives us the ability to walk in peace if we lose our finances, if we are hungry, when we are out in the street and our family is freezing. When the world turns against us and we have nowhere to go, joy knows that our faith and love has the attention of God – that His Word will NEVER fail and He will intercede in His time. Praise Him!
JOY IS A STATE OF MIND directly connected to our personal relationship with Christ. It is a state of well-being within the deepest part of our soul and spirit that is based on our love, awareness and obedience in Him. We are filled with contentment when we KNOW we are walking in His perfect will and His peace will rest upon those who follow His voice. Sin is the destroyer of joy. It is the haunting and misery of failing God and the knowing of our willingness to produce the darkness of strife. Repentance restores our relationship and renews our joy. Can we find a more peaceful place of joy than resting on the bosom of Jesus?
THE SECRET PLACE