Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Why Can't I Stay Happy?

You are having the perfect day. Everything seems to be going your way. Class is cancelled. You were able to catch up on your rest. You actually enjoyed going to the gym.  Someone was kind and bought your lunch, and "Fancy" did not come on the radio once. You have not been this happy in a while, and then it happened.

Someone says something negative to you, and your day is ruined. You are mad, and there is no turning back. How did this happen? The simple answer would be that your attitude changed, but the root of the problem is internal.

Our hearts are designed for extreme satisfaction, but even happiness is too fickle of an emotion to fulfill us. As my example in the previous paragraph, our happiness can be ruined in a split second.

Is there anything out there that can gratify us ceaselessly?

Let's take a glance at the Apostle Paul, as he was writing a letter to the church of Philippi (This letter later became a book in the Bible known as Philippians).

 Now, if there was anybody who had the right to complain to his friends about how unhappy he was, it would be Paul.

While writing the letter to the church, Paul was beaten, thrown into prison, and was in chains for casting a demon out of a woman. Riots with murderous intent were formed against him in the cities he visited because he liked to talk about a guy named Jesus. I think Paul would be the winner of the worst day stories amongst your friends.

So what does Paul write to his friends? He writes of how encouraged he is from them, and how he longs to see them again. That is exactly what you thought he would say right? He then talks about how much joy he has, and how he considers everyone better then himself. It makes me question my response if I was in Paul's situation

As I read the book of Philippians, I can not help but notice how many times Paul uses the words "joy" and "rejoice" in this small book. Paul was probably not happy about his unlucky circumstances, but this guy was rejoicing in the midst of all this persecution because he knew there was some greater purpose than himself.

The reason why Paul was able to be content in every situation was because he had found the only thing that satisfies eternally, Jesus. Paul realized that happiness comes and goes, but the joy of Christ lasts forever

There is hope in the cross, and there is satisfaction in Christ. Do not think that Jesus only works for Paul and a few other people.

There is a reason you are not happy with your appearance. There is a reason you are always wanting to buy the next big thing, and you become bored with it. The girlfriend or boyfriend that you thought would complete you has not come close. Pornography and parties have become monotonous, and no matter how much your favorite sports team wins, it is never enough.

We keep trying to fill the gap in our hearts with hollow things, but Jesus is the only person or thing that can make us whole. Christ satisfies and desires your affections.

As for me, I long for you to experience the joy and hope Paul had in the One who satisfies