Monday, March 16, 2009

Happiness Is...

I have been wanting to write this post ever since I read Erin's blog a few weeks ago.

To me happiness is...
*Watching Drew and Kade love on each other
*having a clean house
*sitting down with a good book
*a long (uninterrupted shower)
*fresh sheets
*a beautiful West Texas day
*getting something in the mail - I love parcels =)
*a West Texas sunset
*getting my hair done
*buying something new
*Kettle pancakes
*watching our savings account grow
*visiting Aggieland
*going dancing
*going out to eat/shopping with my girlfriends
*being part of authentic worship
*the smell of Johnson's baby lotion
*planning vacations
*seeing Ronnie in a cowboy hat and starched wranglers =)
*cooking out
*Mexican food
*receiving a new revelation from God's Word
*getting out on the lake
*hearing the rain fall
*a good hair day
*long naps on Sundays
*a new episode of the Biggest Loser, Criminal Minds, or Friday Night Lights
*getting pumped about a new idea
*long talks with Ronnie about our dreams (especially moving to the country)
*hugs from the boys
*the smell of a breakfast cooking (not in my kitchen)
*kisses from Ronnie
*listening to the boys laugh and sing
*taking long walks

I have been thinking a lot about happiness lately. In fact the last two verses I have memorized with the LPM Siestas have everything to do with that deep down, ain't nothing shakin' me happiness born-again Christians call - joy.

Happiness comes from our feelings - BUT because we live in a fallen world sometimes our feelings (our lying hearts - Jer 17:9) tell us, "Life STINKS!" I will be honest with you there are days (not as many as I had before I was saved) where I don't feel happy. The dishes seem to never end, toys are all over the house, the kids are fighting, and all I keep thinking is, "I wish there were six more hours in the day!"

BUT - JOY is the peace and the satisfaction that comes from a quieted mind, heart and spirit. Joy comes only from God. He ALONE is our rock, our refuge, our fortress where we will not be shaken. Storms can come, recessions can hit, sickness can knock at our door, BUT JOY IN THE LORD IS OUR STRENGTH. Joy is God's ticket to us to get off of the roller coaster of life's emotions. Joy is God's pass to not be a slave to our circumstances anymore! Joy is freedom!

Ephesians 3:17-19 “so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

The word "filled" in the last part of that verse in Greek is pleroo (play-ro'-o) which means to fill to the top, to fill to the brim so that nothing shall left wanting.

Can you imagine being so full of God's love that you don't want for anything? True satisfaction, joy, and happiness- the kind that lasts.

It comes only from letting Christ make HIS home in our heart. Revelation 3:20 says He knocks and waits for us to open the door so He can come in. He waits...He is a gentleman; He will never barge in. He loves us too much to take away our freedom to choose. But He wants to come in - not just on Sundays, but Monday-Saturday. He wants to give us life and life abundantly, but we must first open the door and let Him in.

Psalm 16:11 says, "You have made known to me the path of life. You will fill me with joy in your presence; with eternal pleasures at your right hand."

God promises to fill us with joy if we seek Him. He promises to fill us with so much joy that nothing is left wanting. I know this promise - I got to test it out two weeks ago when I felt myself sliding into a deep pit- a slimy pit full of mud and mire. I was depressed, I felt frumpy, for every one thing I did, the boys undid three, I was exhausted, and even Ronnie breathing in and out seemed to get on my nerves =(

So I had to make a choice!

Stay in the pit or choose to call on God and meditate on His Truth.

I called on His name, I cried out to Him as I walked with the boys in the field behind our house, and He heard me. I took my ticket and hopped off that roller coaster.

The boys were sick Sunday through Friday and then Ronnie and I came down with a cold Friday and ran fever all weekend. Despite being stuck in the house, having cabin fever, listening to crying babies, and canceling Spring Break plans I have just been "bee-boppin" around all weekend full of joy- so full I feel like I am going to explode. God's promises are for real. They are for real and they are for real people like me and you- we just have to open the door and invite Him in!

To me joy is....
Your turn!


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