Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Does God's love outrank your troubles?


A friend and I were discussing whether it was possible to wake up 365 days a year with a smile on your face. My answer was a quick NO, that obviously I couldn't because she happened to accidentally witness that horrible attitude that I blogged about awhile back. She then kindly said I was entitled to a bad day/bad mood. To which I quickly disagreed. Then obviously I had to prove 'why not'. After a moment of thinking, and another statement that led me down this road, I realized the answer.
The reason I'm happy, the reason I have joy, peace, love, and contentment in my life, is simply because He loves me. And because of that love, I'm reaping the benefits of a change in lifestyle, a change in attitude, a change in perspective, and especially, through all those things, a change in circumstances. My life, mind and body have been changed thanks to His loving mercies and grace towards me. My relationships with others have changed, thanks to His relationship with me. Now, if that's why I'm happy, every day, then why would I be unhappy?
Ok, let's just say my workload just increased, I'm not going to get paid any extra, and my boss is no longer kind and generous, but frustrated, angry and always on my case. Sounds pretty bad so far to me. Do the reasons I just gave you, OUTRANK the reasons for my joy? My made up problems do sound bad to me, but, so far the problems haven't even come close to the blessings.
If the only reason to be in a bad mood is if the bad outweighs the good, what kind of scale are you using??? Or is it that we've just given ourselves permission to be grumping, a sense of entitlement, because we're not normally grumpy. Why can't Christians be expected to have joy all the time? I know at least one person that will argue, being happy, and having joy isn't the same thing. So I'm going to ask, what is the difference? Can joy and unhappiness exist together? And, even still, do we have any reason to be unhappy?
That's not to say that I don't allow people to mourn, there is a time for mourning, and a time for weeping, there even really seems to be a time for sorrow. But, does that mean God approves of us mourning, and weeping, and sorrowing over temporal earthly things like whether my washing machine has broken down or not?
I asked God to take away my habit. God said, No. It is not for me to take away, but for you to give it up.
I asked God to grant me patience. God said, No. Patience is a byproduct of tribulations; it isn't granted, it is learned.
I asked God to spare me pain. God said, No.Suffering draws you apart from worldly cares and brings you closer to me.
I asked God for all things that I might enjoy life.God said, No. I will give you life, so that you may enjoy all things.
I asked God to give me happiness. God said, No.I give you blessings; Happiness is up to you.

6 comments:

J. W. Poteet II said...

"Can joy and unhappiness exist together?" Yes, for instance if your loved one dies you will be unhappy, but you can still have joy. I feel kinda weird justifying being unahppy, but it seems pretty unrealistic to expect people to be happy all the time. Was Job? Was Daniel,Noah, Abraham, David? Jesus? Was Jesus happy all the time? No way! That's what makes the Bible great. It's not made of unrealistically happy people who have troubles but are happy anyway. The Bible is full of real people who become unhappy, mad, envious, lustful, and even angry at God (yeah, I know who some of this is aimed at.) And those are the good people. God doesn't expect us to always be happy. He expects us to always trust Him, have faith in Him, serve Him. God expects us to be human. Humans have these emotions, God gave them to us. He isn't disappointed or upset when we act human. He knows us.

Anonymous said...

Even God himself has not always been happy.

flyawaynet said...

Ok, just because we feel those ways, does that make it right? Yes, I agree it is totally human to feel that way, angry, envious, unhappy, lustful - but does that actually make it the standard that we should try to live up to?
I'm not trying to say "No one can ever be unhappy" I'm saying maybe no one really 'should' be unhappy.
... As to anonymous, I hope you come back, because I'd like to know WHEN God was unhappy? I know He was displeased several times, is that what you're referring to?

Anonymous said...

There is nothing really left to add to this but a loud AMEN. I love it when I can learn from others. Was there a time God was unhappy? When man failed God, beginning with Adam and Eve, God created a new plan so man could worship and have fellowship with him. When this failed, God sent His only Son (God in the flesh) to die for our sins to provide me a way forever to come before Him and to have eternal life.

flyawaynet said...

Thanks, for your comment! It was nice to have someone else agree with my post :) Though it's nice to stir up discussion by getting different opinions.

J. W. Poteet II said...

Jesus wept. Why? I've always wondered that. He delayed on purpose, surely had some idea in mind that he was waiting for Lazarus to die and he seemed to have no doubt in his prayer that God would raise Lazarus, yet he wept. He also wept over Jerusalem. Ecclesiastes says there is a time to laugh and a time to weep. Paul exhorted the Romans (12:15) to weep with those that weep. Our less happy emotions did not get created after sin entered, they were in the Garden of Eden. It is not until Heaven that God will wipe all tears from our eyes. I don't have anything wrong with trying to maintain a cheerful attitude, I just don't think there's anything wrong with being unhappy. Unhappiness is like pain. It tells us that something is wrong and motivates us to change it. It is healthy and necessary. A life without weeping is like a life without pain. It is emotional leprosy.