It seems like these days, it’s cool to be unhappy. As though there is some badge of honor of being unimpressed. We are inundated with the popular culture of “looking cool”, aloof and impassionate. Our lives can seem too busy and too frail to be joyous or excited.
If something good happens, far too often, we don’t stop and celebrate. Instead, we hope and pray that it doesn’t end. We cross our fingers and hope to God that our good luck streak won’t run out.
I remember a moment when I felt ashamed of smiling at a high point in my life. Why? Well, because I was worried that people would think I was overly excited, or perhaps others might envy my success.
Can you relate?
We work so hard for these pinnacles in our lives – yet when we reach them, we push our benchmark out a little bit further. Why is that?
We think happiness is short term.
I know we always say, “happiness is based on happenings”. But we can make a choose at any given moment and choose to be happy. We can choose to have a positive disposition, no matter what our circumstance. Happiness is not short term.
If happiness is short term, then we have chosen to be unhappy – we have made the choice that something new has to happen each and every moment, each and every day in order for us to maintain our happiness.
I challenge you to look around.
You can look into the eyes of your child, and choose to be happy. You can focus on your health, your career, or whatever is going well in your life and be happy.
Happiness is the immediate decision to take a snapshot of your current circumstance and feel pleasure, contentment, wellbeing, gratitude and joy.
However, in the world we live in, we are convinced that the newest, exciting thing must happen for us to recapture our joy. We are waiting for the next Netflix series, the next big event, the next paycheck, the next milestone in our lives to feel the sensation of happiness.
What if we chose to be happy – at any given time, during any given situation?
What if we decided that no matter how life tried to discourage us, we would focus on the goodness life has to offer?
There was a season where I was binging Netflix every night and most every day, I was searching for ways to fill all my time so I wouldn’t have the time to slow down and think. I was snappy with my husband and my children and I didn’t see an end to my situation. My prayer time was lacking luster and I kept pointing the finger, blaming others for my lack of finances, lack of direction and lack of overall joy.
Get intentional about choosing happiness
It wasn’t until I began to fill my day with activities that energized me and strengthened my soul. I began reading instead of binging every night, I joined a book club, I began meditating and praying on the scriptures and I started therapy.
Change your language
You shall have what you say.
I had to get intentional about my words. I noticed that the more I talked bad about my husband, the more unsatisfied and bitter about my marriage I became. I began speaking life into my marriage, my finances, my mind and I began to see rapid results.
Give yourself permission to be happy
At a certain point, I made the decision that I was going to be happy. I wrote a letter to myself in my journal.
First, I applauded my victories over the years, reflecting on them and giving thanks. I also acknowledged my own challenges – I had to acknowledge, okay, yes, this is hard, but you continue to do what you have to do.
Then I had to remind myself that I don’t have to fight this fight alone. We don’t have to endure life in our own strength – otherwise, life would be perilous in itself. We have God on our side. We have a GREAT God who is fighting for us, who died for us, who is interceding on our behalf.
I had to remind myself to be gentle with myself and to be gracious.
I had to remind myself that God’s grace was sufficient. That even on a bad day, I am loved. I am amazing.
Sis. Let me remind you. Even on your worse day, you are amazing, you are loved, and you are enough. Period.
It’s time to say enough is enough. Give yourself permission to be happy. Be intentional about fully appreciating and absorbing all the good that is everywhere around you.
Open those guarded places in your heart that shut out love, joy, peace, strength, endurance, FAITH.
Believe that love is possible.
Believe that the joy of the Lord is your birthright. If you desire true, lasting joy, love and peace, you must be very deliberate. Say no to every opportunity to be angry, doubtful, bitter, resentful and depressed.
When the opportunity arises for those feelings to come in, you replace those negative words with the word of God. ? ? ?
I find strength in this scripture…
Philippians 4:13 I find that the strength of Christ’s explosive power infuses me to conquer every difficulty.
For days and days, I repeated this scripture OVER AND OVER again, until it got deep down in my spirit. The Word of God is my affirmation.
As you rehearse the Word of God over and over in your spirit, you will find that these powerful Words will wash and cleanse your mind of those negative feelings. Don’t believe me? Try it.
You can choose right now. You can choose today to be happy. You can choose to break the cycle of unhappiness in your mind and in your home.
Father God, in the name of Jesus.
I release the negative cycle of unhappiness in my life.
I choose the abundant life you promised me today.
I choose joy.
I choose peace.
I choose love.
I choose to appreciate the beauty of this world you’ve created.
I choose to appreciate every blessing you’ve given me.
Break the chains of depression and sadness in my life.
I believe that the joy of the Lord is my birthright
In Jesus name, I pray.