"You have permission to feel sorrow. It's okay to cry. The God who gave you your smile also gave you your tear ducts." YES! Oh how life-giving and refreshing those words have been for me as they have washed over me like the refreshing life-giving waters that claimed me in the waters of Baptism.
Yet it can be so easy for us to get caught up in the world around us...to compare ourselves to everyone around us. Are you happy? Do you deserve to be happy? Do you sometimes see yourself wanting what everyone else has? I know that I have fallen into this trap more than once in my life.
If only..... I was as good as.
If only....I had (fill in the blanks)
The truth is that happiness is a gift given to us by God especially when we truly remember who and whose we are. I have been reminded of this as I have read through JDL's new book "The Happiness Dare" which launches TODAY! (I am telling you go pick up a copy for yourself and at least 5 of your closest friends)
"You find happiness by being the best version of you!--Jennifer Dukes Lee
Throughout the book, I found myself realizing that God made me and each of us uniquely. As I took the happiness dare quiz, I found out that I am a giver with relater being only one point behind. I love being around people, but more importantly, I love to help others. I would much rather give than receive. I love to encourage others and don't even always realize that I am encouraging others until they point it out to me. These traits are core to who I am as a beloved child of God. (To find out your
happiness style, go here: What is Your Happiness Style?)
My happiness truly comes from knowing who and whose I am; a beloved child of God. There are times that I'll admit that I forget who I am. But God has this way of reminding us how much God loves us. "For God so loved the world that God gave God's only Son that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send God's son into the world to condemn the world, but rather to have life through it (John 3:16)."
"Happiness is an outward expression of an inward joy that is found in Jesus"--Jennifer Dukes Lee
And that joy comes in various shapes and sizes. It comes in the blessings that God bestows upon us each and every day. It comes in both our tears and our laughter. It comes in the friends and family who encourage us and love us daily. It comes in know that we are not on this journey called life alone. It comes in being brave together! "Together is what makes us brave when life makes us scared."
There are days that it is hard to find happiness when we turn on our television to watch the news. There is war and violence. There is hatred. Yet God calls us to find our happiness; to find the happiness that is found in an inward joy that is ultimately found in Jesus. Now that is a promise I can cling to each and every day of my life. And because of that promise and Jennifer Dukes Lee's words, I am choosing to be happy and to partake from this day forward in #thehappinessdare. Will you join me?
I am linking up with Holly and Testimony Tuesday; Kelly and the RaRa linkup; Jennifer and Tell His Story; Holley and Coffee for your Heart and Kristin and Three Word Wednesday.