How To Be Happy And Not Crash From The High

One thing I hear a lot is the pursuit of happiness. But no one talks about what will be done once this happiness is acquired. It sounds like a drive to the ice-cream shop with the candy in mind, but no plan to deal with the aftermath of the sugar high and spent change.

Here’s what I’ve learned about happiness:

It is very hard work

There is a huge personal sacrifice to finding happiness. One must shed the old self in favour of a new, free being, and our egos are our greatest enemies in this attempt. You don’t just put on happy, or pick it up as you go along. You can’t fill a full cup. Something has to go, and that thing is your ego. Let go of expectations, ideals, perceptions, hurts, prejudices, grudges, regrets, wishes, and now we’re talking.

It must be a priority

Happiness comes about through the decisions we make in our day-to-day life. We must be aware of our choices and make choices that support our want to be happy. To start, we won’t be happy. We’ll have to make a lot of changes that do nothing for us now but build the future. If you want to know your priorities pay attention to your daily schedule. If happiness is your heart’s desire, it’ll be a priority, not a future start date. Doesn’t sound like fun? Yup.

Needs a destination

The pursuit of happiness must have an end destination to be measurable. Peace of mind is important to me because it enables me to be productive. I’m not spending my energy working on my mental frame on mind, I’m doing the things I have planned and want done. Being happy allows me to see opportunities to serve and grow where I otherwise wouldn’t see them, and being happy makes me bless others generously. Happiness is one of the channels I use to meet my overall vision and purpose over my life. At the same time, I have a use for pain and other emotions as well. So what does happiness mean to you and is it tied to a person, place or activity?

Happiness that’s real doesn’t crash. It’s even-keeled, realistic, and not for show. What do you think?

How To Be Happy And Not Crash From The High

Little Big Things

Little Big Things

Does God Answer Prayers?

I’ve mentioned quite often in my posts that for the longest time I thought that God didn’t answer my prayers. Every time I made a request I seemed to get the complete opposite response. When I asked for job security, I was laid off. When I asked for a lasting relationship, I lost mine, on and so forth. So I figured it was time to make peace with being at the end of a lifelong cruel joke.

Years later, I still thank God for the prayers He returned with a “no” and “not yet.”

Older and wiser, I now see how short-sighted my requests were, where God had solutions to my ever-growing nature. Sometimes it seemed like I was forgotten but that wasn’t true. I had to get myself right with God before I could go off belting demands as though His sole purpose were to serve me. If bullying worked with the world, it wasn’t going to work with God. I had to learn to speak His language — love and reverence.

Now, I am confident of my prayers.

First off, I am in right standing with God–nothing I did by the way. I couldn’t have. It’s in my nature to sin and chase after what satisfies the flesh as a result of Adam and Eve’s sin. But through the cleansing Blood of Jesus I am in right standing with God, and the huge gap that separated us is forever sealed. I can make my petitions directly to Him. Not only that, but the Bible assures me that He hears me.

I still get several “no” and “not yet.”

That’ll never change. I still don’t know what’s good for me or what God has planned for me. Experience however has chastened me to respect His decision and wait patiently to see what He has in mind. There’s never regret waiting on the Lord. And faith is tested when I make my request of Him and trust that He’s heard and received my prayer. Do you know the first step to pleasing God? It is approaching Him with a trusting heart.

As you pray today, search your heart and know if you’re in right standing with God. Ask Him in faith to reveal His truth to you today.

God hears and answers prayers. Do you agree?

Does God Answer Prayers?

Do You Trust God’s Positioning?

When Joseph found himself at the bottom of a well or on the floor of a jail cell, I wonder how he reconciled his God-given dreams with his reality? It must have been difficult and lonely to know one thing in his heart and experience quite another.

What about Mary, the Mother of Jesus? When she found herself running away from a ruler who sought her baby’s life–how difficult it must have been to experience such a shocking turn of events after learning her great purpose.

Do you sometimes feel this way? That God’s promises and the events in your life don’t add up? This was my struggle for a long time. Now, I think more of what I’m about to urge you to do, contemplate on the matter called positioning.

Here’s what I consider when I wonder at what God is doing in my life:

I think of the Biblical characters He brings to mind. I ponder on their lives, relate to their humanity and take comfort in loving and serving the same God who called them and took them to incredible heights–His way. I absorb His faithfulness to them as I look back over His faithfulness throughout the years over my life.

Read on the stories of regular men and women who trusted in the Lord’s positioning. The Bible is a love story that shows how God loves and walks with you through all your brokenness and faithlessness. God sees much more than you could understand and if He has you in an uncomfortable place it is ultimately for His glory. Can you trust His positioning?

Do You Trust God’s Positioning?

3 Good Reasons To Seek God’s Will Over Your Life

Sometimes, picking up the Bible and seeking God’s word over a decision in your life will sound as practical as eating a bowl of cereal and milk in the car as you drive. Breakfast is a healthy start to the day, but where’s the time?

Even though we know to reach for the Bible, spend quiet time with our Lord, and seek His will during tough times, we’d rather figure out how to deal with our mess in the form of distractions, calculators, and complaint sessions with friends. I know what that life is about, and while I got temporary satisfaction with voicing my problems, nothing was resolved.

Many years later, I realized that the beginning of a storm is the moment that I should pull out my umbrella and check my safety items. That means pulling out my Bible and spending quiet time with the Lord.

There are times however when the situation doesn’t allow for me to excuse myself to pray. I’ve had to go into a bathroom stall at work to speak with the Lord over a brewing storm at my workspace. I’ve taken quick walks to speak with Him about disturbing situations in other scenarios. I’ve stayed in my car for a few minutes longer to pray before entering a place of fear or conflict. There are many opportunities to invite God’s presence into a crisis, long before it turns into a disaster.

Here are some good reasons to open your Bible and hear from the Lord today about a problem area in your life:

1) God already knows your fears and wants you to be brave. Read the story of Moses and Joshua in the Old Testament, and count how many times the Lord told them not to fear. That same God walks with you. Before you arrive at the Red Sea, and before you go into Canaan, He is already there and has made a way. Seek His Will and receive His perfect peace and courage over the decision you must make.

2) If you’re walking in God’s Will, you have the victory. I’ve overcome many struggles, most of which I knew for certain I didn’t have the strength to face. But it didn’t stop me from believing that God could do it. I would look at the problem square in the face and declare my weakness and the source of my strength. No matter how big the difficulty, I knew that the victory was mine in Christ Jesus, and you have the same victory too, if you give yourself over to God’s will.

3) Seeking God’s will is a less laborious experience than walking through your own and then discovering just how lost you are. I’ve done both–walked in my own ways and found myself in the thick of a pack of wolves, and I’ve also taken the time to seek the Lord’s will over my life and thought I’d die from the sheer effort of pursuing it. Putting my spirit down in favour of the Lord’s has meant that I am secure walking in His path and there is no comparison to the degree of comfort and joy felt at God’s right hand.

In a life full of difficult and painful experiences, you receive His special graces to walk through. God equips you for what He has planned for you to walk through. So don’t be afraid to invite Him into your mess.

3 Good Reasons To Seek God’s Will Over Your Life

Power of Silence: Making Silence Your Friend

Humans express who they are with their words and so choice of words are an important aspect of communication. We say things from reasons that stem from our hearts. If we have sick hearts, our thoughts and words will be twisted and self-based. If we have healthy hearts, our thoughts and words are nourishing and other-based.

Considering a partnering this year?

Listen carefully to whomever you’re interested in, before working for the person, pursuing a personal relationship, becoming investment partners or even roommates.

In my experience, one must listen past the first few pleasing sentences that serve the need to bond and be accepted. True intentions are always finally revealed. Be brave if you discern the call to walk away. Silence is a friend that can save you a world of hurt.

Power of Silence: Making Silence Your Friend

How To Be Happy – A Look At Potential Blockages

Happiness, right?

Who doesn’t want to be happy and greater yet – who wants the hard work of getting it? Hard work? Yep. The things that matter don’t come cheap, and this is important, because humans don’t value what easily comes to them.

We’re more liable to take care of what’s been hard-won than something that’s been inherited or gifted. Happiness is hard-won, and below are some ways in which we get in our own way.

This list should allow you to ponder on your life and some of the things that prevent you from pursuing happiness. Ask God to show blockages that stand in your way.

Denial: We aren’t honest about who we are

We like to think of ourselves in ways that bring comfort to our psyche. Even self-derogatory terms are said in an endearing way to spare the ego. What we rarely accept is the truth of our state. For this reason, a lot of our ideas and plans for the future do not materialize because we aren’t realistic. Who we are is the first step to uncovering who we could be.

Stuck: We like our ways

Let’s be honest, as much as we’d like to complain about some of our habits – we’re quite content with them. Were we not, we’d quit. It’s that simple. If we stop fighting the lie that there are many barriers preventing us from making needed changes in our lives, and admit our love of the sin that stands in our way – we’re one step ahead of denial. Acknowledging a problem gives room to address its removal, whereas denial gives it reason and power to stay.

Excuses: We have our reasons

Nothing hurts like feeling misunderstood and many of us feel this way when damaging behavioural traits are pointed out in us. We see the condemnation, not the love, and bubbling up to our defence are ready-made excuses. The problem with excuses is that they don’t solve problems. They are the children of a lazy mouth and lead to ruin – full stop. One who excuses his/her behaviour will reap the empty fruits of inaction long after there’s no one left to listen.

Fear: We don’t like change

Listen, if humans controlled nature then we’d have no winter, storms or cold winds. Every day would be summer. And the ecological system would come crashing down as well as many other disasters. As hard as it is to accept it, we sometimes shy away from changes that lead to happiness because the pain of the process outweighs the benefits of the change. We’re comfortable being miserable, we learned misery from someone we looked up to and we’ve passed it down to those who look up to us. We look for others to be miserable with, and the only competition between us is whose life is more miserable. To be happy is to change all that and what is there to gossip about if we’re happy? Some people live for chaos and unhappiness because they don’t like change, period.

A good look at where we are is the start to knowing where we fit on the map – are we far off, or well on our way?

How To Be Happy – A Look At Potential Blockages