How happy are you right now? Seriously, are you over-the-moon kind of crazy-happy in your life? Blessed? Certainly, better than you deserve, but do you experience real blessing in your life such that you are overwhelmed at how good life is…how good God has been to you?
Sometimes, the blessings of life seem to hide when I spend most of my time focused on the troubles. I get caught up in the busyness of life and the overly full calendar, the relational trials, the bills, and on it goes, so that it crowds out time to focus on the blessings in life and even robs me of the time I need to even pursue real, lasting happiness.
I was revisiting one of my favorites in Scripture this morning: Psalm 1. Kind of smooshing the English Standard Version and the Holman Christian Standard version (my two faves), it starts off saying, “How blessed (or happy) is the man who does not…[and here I paraphrase heavily]…listen to ungodly advice, hang out with people who chase after ungodliness, or take part in conversation with people who criticize and put people down…[ok, I’m done paraphrasing], but his delight is in the [Word of God…yeah, I know, I paraphrased again] and on His Law he meditates day and night…”
So, if you caught that, Psalm 1 is saying that happiness and blessing in life is a result of delighting in the Lord’s instruction “day and night”, which is just another way of saying constantly. It’s about taking the Bible down off of the shelf and setting aside time in the morning to read it. It’s about reflecting on what was read throughout the day, and quite often means memorizing at least some portion of it so that it’s fresh in your mind at all times. This is the life of a disciple who wants happiness in life and if I’m not experiencing that; if my life is crowded out with all sorts of things that don’t end in happiness or blessing, then I have to start by evaluating my time in the Word. Now, that said, Scripture isn’t talking about a “giddy” kind of happiness that is all circumstantial, but a joy and contentment, or the ability to delight in even the most mundane part of life, realizing the blessing in even being able to do it or participate in it.
This changes the way we look at our crazy schedule, our less-than-satisfactory job, and our relational struggles so that we become grateful for opportunities, for steady work and people in our lives to interact with. It changes our perspective!
So, how much happiness and blessing do you want in your life? No, really, how much do you want, because if the amount of time we spend in God’s Word is a “pound-for-pound” comparison to the amount of joy, contentment, blessing and happiness we experience, I wonder if we want all of these things as much as we say we do. Saying we want blessing in life without going to the source of blessing for our lives is like saying we are thirsty but not realizing there’s a sink in the kitchen. Sadly, in my own life, I often walk through the kitchen, notice the sink, but decide I’m too busy to put the glass under the faucet and turn the knob. That’s short-sightedness and results in shelved blessings!
Then I walk out of the room, look around at my parched life and think, “Man, I wish I had something to drink.”