What makes us happy?
I'm not talking about joy - that is found in Jesus Christ and a personal relationship with God.
I'm not talking about peace - that comes through knowing your sins are forgiven and the Holy Spirit's indwelling
I'm talking about plain happy.
Because joy comes from the inside, but happiness is a product of your environment.
Oh, I know what they say, but it's wrong. In a way. Happiness is when something external stimulates you; brings a smile to your lips; or even breaks out a hearty laugh.
It can be a product of foolishness, but as my parents used to say, "When everyone is laughing foolishly, pretty soon someone's gonna be crying." Because foolish happiness is vanity. Doing stupid stuff with friends makes you grin, but there is leanness in your soul.
So how do I extract happiness out of my environment?
Learn where to find it.
When I step out the door and the sun is shining, the birds are singing, the dew sparkles on the clover...
I know it sounds cliche but it makes me happy.
When I step out the door and the wind chill is -26 and the snow is slapping me in the face like a sandblaster..
I get in my old truck and the mighty Cummins roars to life on the first try. That makes me happy.
I see the autumn leaves fall.
I watch a tire fill without leaks.
I listen to children playing.
Watch the sun set over the lake in a blaze of fiery colors.
Hear the harmony of the congregation praising the Lord.
Watch the crackling flames of a wood fire.
All these make me happy. Because all these I count as a gift from my Father in heaven.
I'm going to go out now and work on rusty brakes in 20 degrees.
And I am going to find something to be happy about.