Three Secrets to Finding Happiness
By Janet Perez Eckles
"Will happiness ever come?" I asked myself during sleepless nights. What is happiness, anyway?
That emotion made sense for others, but not for me. My world had turned dark. Blindness set in at age 31 and happiness was lost. Lost back in my days as a sighted person. Now, only gloom awaited me.
But how wrong I was. The journey from devastation to deep joy wasn't easy nor fast, but doable. A reminder of that transition, that profound transformation, was stirred during my recent trip to Mexico.
The airport escort guided me as we entered the airplane. The flight attendant handed immigration forms to passengers. "One per family please."
I sat by the window and after all initial announcements ended I pressed the light to call for assistance.
"Could you please help me fill this out?" I asked the flight attendant who came to the seat.
"Sure. Come with me."
I gathered my stuff and followed him to the front of the airplane.
"You can sit here," he said.
I settled in the seat, spacious and comfortable. I stretched out my legs, plenty of room. We finished the form and he asked if I wanted to stay in that seat. I was in first class. "Are you kidding?" I said with a silly grin, "Sure, would love that."
I made myself comfortable and began to compare. Rather than getting the medicine-size cup of water I would get in the other section of the plane, I got a fresh, cold bottle of water. Rather than the tiny bag of peanuts, I got my choice of appetizers. The trip was, well, unexpectedly delightful.
I had made that same transition after I lost my sight. I had been taking tiny doses of happiness—in relationships, vacations, shopping, activities and superficial pass-times. I thought that was how one finds happiness.
But joy was different. When God offered me a seat in the VIP section of His love, I accepted. And the trip through life turned better.
Painful turbulence came, but His power calmed my heart. With Him as my pilot, guiding my life, momentary, superficial activities masked as happiness belonged in the coach section. Now a sweet, lasting, deep joy danced in my life.
He offers you the very same. He has a seat reserved just for you. And if you desire to leave behind the search to find happiness and instead relish in joy, complete joy that shines through your days, here are three steps we can all follow:
1. Change our perception. Recognize we don't find happiness. We create it. We craft it by turning the key to unlock our heart and receive the joy God offers. His desire is that we live in complete joy. When happy moments, happy relationships, and happy results come to an end, joy remains.
2. Celebrate the promise God gave. During tough moments, painful stages, it's not our strength, but His power that lifts us up and carries us through. Relying in that guarantee is what revives joy once again.
3. Call upon Him when sadness, gloom or fear draws near. Calling the powerful name of Jesus silences destructive thoughts of self-pity, loneliness and discouragement. With them out of the way, joy will glow again.
Happiness ends in time. Joy lasts as long as God's love. He promised: "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. If you obey My commands, you will remain in My love, just as I have obeyed My Father's commands and remain in His love. I have told you this so that My joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete" (John 15:9-11).
Father, not human happiness, but your joy is what my soul hungers for. Thank you for the promise, thank you for the joy that fills my days no matter what comes my way. In Jesus' name, amen.
• Are you still in the searching- for- happiness stage of your life?
• What keeps you from accepting the first-class kind of life God offers you?
• What are your happiest moments? Do they last?
Copyright © 2015, Janet Perez Eckles, used by permission.
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Before Janet Perez Eckles became an international speaker, author, life coach and radio host, she had lost her eyesight completely at 31, suffered the murder of her son and the acquittal of the man responsible. But she doesn't live in misery. Because of God's grace, her days shine with success and joy. www.janetperezeckles.com
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