Monday, August 22, 2011

"Getting To Happy"

Today's Meditation: "Now I pray that the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace, believing that you will abound [overflow] in [confident] hope through the power of the Holy Ghost." Romans 15:13

You are the only one who can make YOU happy. Happiness is your original stage of being. It is what you were before you began to identify with your body image, race, denomination, a family role, school grades, a boyfriend/girlfriend, your age, social security number, your credit rating, your marital status, and any other label you may try to hang on to. True happiness is being FAITHFUL to your real self; the better you know yourself, the happier you will be. Many of us in the body of Christ who claim to be blessed and highly favored, the head and not the tale, and created in the image of God—secretly don’t know WHO we are. [Not our name, our title, our position, or our gross income], but I’m talking about WHO we are as it relates to our SELF-WORTH. Self-Worth is not achieved overnight. It is a continuous process which can take years to establish, but can be ruined in an instant with just one negative word.

Sometimes we FORGET who we are in the daily grind of life’s circumstances—When this happens, something strange occurs—we begin to search and SEEK OUT happiness in people, places, and things where it just cannot be found. And repeated, failed attempts to FIND happiness can leave us broken, unfulfilled, discouraged, and confused.

Realize this: Happiness is your Spiritual DNA. It is what we experience when we ACCEPT who we are, and stop trying so hard to be someone we are not. For your consideration:

Character Traits of Happy People:
1. Happy People are Friendly:
Happy people are usually friendly people and are able to serve as a friend. Make a commitment to becoming the most loving person you can possibly be! It always amazes me that people are looking for love, yet they themselves are so unlovable! LOVE is at the essence of the Happiness—We are not here on Earth only to discover happiness, but we must also extend happiness to others. Practice the art of being genuinely friendly with no strings attached.

2. Happy People Appreciate Life:
We don’t have to chase happiness, just choose it and it becomes yours. Never underestimate the Power of Choice! Having more material wealth, physical attractiveness, or spiritual aptitude will mean absolutely nothing to an individual who has already decided to be closed-minded, closed off, mean, and inwardly miserable. If you are to be FILLED with joy through the Power of the Holy Ghost, you must MAKE ROOM FOR HIM. Our inability to be FILLED means that we are ALREADY FULL. But the Question is: What are you full of? If we continue to allow our Body Temples to be packed with lust, greed, hostility, jealousy, envy, drunkenness, sexual immorality, idolatry, and all manner of sin, how can happiness co-habitate with so much filth? It can’t because there will be no room! So, what must we do? We must place a demand on the anointing. We must put the Holy Ghost TO WORK on our behalf—again, this is the Power of Choice! In other words, I’ve got to INTEND to be happy. When asked on a daily basis, “How are you doing?” I will not settle for “good”, “okay”, or “alright”—I CHOOSE TO BE HAPPY! When I make room for the Holy Spirit to be alive and active in my life, I learn how to appreciate everything around me. And appreciation bears the FRUIT that I should be FILLED with: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.(Gal. 5:22)

3. Happy People are Grateful:
Gratitude causes a shift in the balance of power! The devil plays mind games with us in that he challenges us to give up and curse God when we are going through hell. But in the midst of it all, the power of the Holy Ghost HUMBLES us even more—bringing things to our remembrance; compelling us to be grateful. Gospel recording artist Tramaine Hawkins sang in her classic hit “Be Grateful” about the fact that God did not promise sunshine always; and that when the rain does come, it comes so that we can be grateful for the good times as we are going through! When you experience pure gratitude, a shift happens in your PERCEPTION OF THINGS, PEOPLE, and CIRCUMSTANCES. God wants to teach us how to appreciate LIFE AS IT HAPPENS—not in delayed response mode. Gratitude changes your brain! And when my brain changes, I can change the world! (See Romans 12:2!) The more we practice the act of gratitude, the more we will find to be grateful for! You can never be “too grateful” or “too thankful” in the eyes of GOD—go WILD with your attitude of gratitude, and watch it completely elevate you! Grateful people GO UP!

4. Happy People are Free:
Happiness is real easy until you get your 1st major wound. Whether it comes through the death of a family member, disappointment, rejection, betrayal, divorce, sickness or heartbreak—your happiness will be challenged. But one thing I’ve observed---Happy people are quick to forgive. They forgive others, and they forgive themselves. It’s impossible to hold onto a grievance and bitterness while being TRULY happy. Why? Because holding the unforgiveness and the hard-heartedness is a reminder that we were victimized and offended. But the God of Hope who desires to FILL us with joy, would not call us VICTIMS; but rather, He Calls us OVERCOMERS! A happy person holding a grudge is a sign of mistaken identity. And, it is an active CHOICE to keep re-living the suffering! Resentment, pride, bitterness, mourning, and unforgiveness weighs me down; it keeps me tied to negative memories of past hurts. In one of her recent interviews, author Terry McMillan was asked how she was able to move on after such a public, devastating, embarrassing divorce, and write her new book titled, "Getting to Happy". She said, “I became so angry that I couldn’t see straight. I began making bad decisions based on revenge. Anger was destroying my spirit.” FORGIVENESS sets us free to move onward and upward! Forgiveness is letting go! It is the open door to divine healing and Happiness in God! LET IT GO!

5. Happy People have The Holy Spirit:
There is a difference in ‘spending time’ with God, versus ‘having communion’ with God; There is a difference between ‘believing in God’ versus ‘knowing God’. My relationship with God must be 3-Dimensional; I must know [i.e. become intimately acquainted with] God the Father, God the Son [who is seated at the Right hand of the Father daily making intercession for on my behalf]; and God the Holy Spirit. It is the Holy Spirit who has the power to lead us into all truth, teach us all things, and guide us in the way we should go during our time here on Earth. Knowing the Path I should take makes it easier for me to follow the real Leader. Romans 14:17 reminds us that The Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink, but rather a life of happiness, peace, and joy IN THE Holy Ghost! Don’t you want to be a part of the Kingdom?

6. Happy People Have FUN!
Like it or not, you are here today, present on this Earth. Learn to enjoy the MIRACLE of being alive! Don’t take it for granted. Stop with all the controlling behavior; Stop with all the seriousness 24/7; Stop with all the super-spirituality (which is mostly pre-meditated anyway); Stop with the over-analyzing and criticism of all things great and small! Take a moment, put your ego on the shelf, don’t back-slide, but for God’s Sake, have some fun!

"Lord today, let us empty out the filth that has contaminated our spiritual DNA; help us to allow the Holy Spirit to guide us into a lifestyle of happiness. We pray the spirit of Joy to the World!"
Selah. Amen.

---Rev. Stephanie

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