by: Rich Vaughan
What does it take to make you happy? Is it money? Ask most wealthy people and they will tell you that money rarely buys happiness. Is it your health? It could be, but often times we don’t even consider our health until we are not healthy. Is it our sports teams being successful? Perhaps, but that can be a very temporary happiness and can change from game to game and year to year. So what can make us happy?
Well, recently I ran across an article and I found some of this unnamed person’s suggestions really good. Here are some of the things they did to find happiness:
“I pay a waitress/waiter a big tip. The “extra” money might bring a smile to their face and a blessing to my heart.”
“I stop telling someone, especially the elderly, that they have already told me that story. Instead I listen because that story lets them walk down memory lane and relive the past.”
“I give compliments freely and generously. Compliments are a mood enhancer not only for the recipient, but also for me.”
“I politely walk away from people who do not value me. They might not know my worth but I do.”
“I have learned to live each day as if it’s the last. After all, it might be the last.”
“Happiness is a choice, so I choose doing what makes me happy.”
So…what makes YOU happy?
I would add to the above list that what makes me happy is being around my staff. It is pastoring my church. It is talking to and being with my family (and no we are not perfect but I still find joy in my wife, sons, daughter-in-laws, son’s girlfriend, and grandchildren). I find joy in Christian music both old and new. I find joy in Christmas music. I find joy when I think about Jesus. And truthfully, I don’t mean to sound “just like a preacher” in these last comments but I find when I am not happy, when I am struggling with disappointments or anger, that the best way to change my mood is what I have just shared. That may not work for you but it works for me. But I have to CHOOSE to do that – to get out of my bad mood and find my happy mood. I bet for all of you there are different things you would put on your list to make you happy, but I would hope and I would bet that we all would somewhere have in that list a relationship with the Lord. And in the end, I imagine it is trusting in the Lord and his love, presence, power, and grace that makes us truly happy in the midst of a crazy world and year. Amen and Amen.