Here’s a great verse: “The people of Judah and Israel were as numerous as the sand on the seashore; they ate, they drank and they were happy.”1
I have years of Bible study and learning under my belt, but I’m not sure I’ve heard this verse before. At least, its meaning has always slipped past me.
The verse is talking about a period of Israel’s history, during the reign of King Solomon, when there was peace in the land and great prosperity. And what did the people do? They feasted, partied, and were merry!
Sadly, this is a new concept for me. I’m the girl who’s always waiting for the inevitable. When things are good, my instinct is not to enjoy it. Rather, I start to worry, wondering around which corner my next struggle-slash-tragedy-slash-suffering is lurking. I used to think I was preparing myself, but what if I was forfeiting opportunities for joy?
Obviously, we experience sadness, suffering and even prolonged seasons of hardship. But the more I learn about the nature of God, the more I understand how vested He is in our happiness. Abundant joy is a blessing from His hand: “This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it!”2
In the hard times and the struggles, which are guaranteed parts of life, I’ll continue to depend on God’s grace, joy, and peace. But in the good times, when there are happy kids, good friends, blue skies, and a good man loving me, I’m going to celebrate life and be happy! I’m going to recognize how wonderful life is, and I hope you will too!
Happiness doesn’t depend on what we have, but it does depend on how we feel toward what we have. We can be happy with little and miserable with much.—William D. Hoard (1836–1918)
Our happiness depends on the habit of mind we cultivate. So practice happy thinking every day. Cultivate the merry heart, develop the happiness habit, and life will become a continual feast.—Norman Vincent Peale (1898–1993)