Who would have thought that I’d be writing an article on the topic of happiness and satisfaction after everything that we have been through this year due to the COVID-19 virus? After having experienced so much insecurity and uncertainty in the air, how could that be a time to think about happiness?
If you’re like me, part of your happiness is derived from feeling like you have some control over your life. It comes from being able to anticipate events. Yeah, it comes from knowing. But I was reading the Bible this morning, and a passage jumped out at me:
We’re not capable of predicting what we will do or when we will do it. Jesus teaches us to pray “Give us this day our daily bread.”2 When God told the children of Israel to gather manna, it was something they needed to do on a daily basis (except on the Sabbath). God’s just fine with us not knowing tomorrow, with us having to trust and depend on Him.
So how can I be happy in uncertain times? I’ve wrestled with this question over the last few weeks, and this is my conclusion: Each day, I can say “This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it!” I have today, and I know what to do with it.
This doesn’t answer all the questions or give a ton of practical advice. But it provides a base for when things are upside-down, and the usual metrics for happiness and satisfaction are out the window. When it’s hard to think ahead, because you just don’t know, you take today, and you make it the best you can.
1. James 4:13–15 NIV
2. Matthew 6:11