So, I'm just sitting here tonight, with the windows open, tv on, going through some sites on StumbleUpon ... one of the pages that came up was titled, "The Pursuit of Happiness: 15 Lessons to Keep in Mind." Well, this caught my attention so I just had to read through the list, because, really who doesn't want happiness. Here are just a couple of their "lessons."
1. The only person that can ever truly make you happy is yourself. Stop depending on everyone else. While I do believe that you shouldn't depend on anyone else to make you happy, to "complete" you (yes, not even your spouse) ... it's a bit self indulgent to believe that you, and you alone can make yourself happy. And what is happiness? Happiness is a state of mind or feeling characterized by contentment, love, satisfaction, pleasure, or joy.
While I do like to be happy (who doesn't?) - I look at it as temporal. This type of happiness is fleeting like when I buy a new pair of shoes or a new bag ... that makes me happy. But, does that guarantee me happiness for all eternity? No. The only way for that is through God. I think so many people shy away from that as God does not promise temporary happiness; in fact the Bible assumes problems will come your way. But God does promise lasting joy for all those who believe in him. I stick by the FACT that [Psalm 62:7] -
My salvation and my honor depend on God ; he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
5. The world is never just black and white, right or wrong, one way or another. Try and see things from as many points of view as possible. I'm not really sure when the "everything goes" mentality started, but it seems to be getting more prevalent. Things are very often black and white, things are right or wrong, things are one way (not another). While I do agree that we should be kind to all walks of people and be a guiding light to all those around us (not necessarily by preaching to them - but living an example of the true Christian life) - that doesn't mean that we have to agree with everything out there. So many people seem to be on the "anything but God" track -- they believe in themselves, the universe, idols, etc. (anything but God). I hear about it more and more each day and it truly saddens me and I know it has to sadden God as well.
The point to this ... we have to keep fighting the good fight. Pray for those around us that haven't made the decision to trust Jesus with their lives, join in their lives and try to be an example and a help ... but without letting go of our beliefs and giving into the everything goes mentality.