“If you’re happy and you know it…”
It’s somewhat silly child’s song but it struck me that it impressed on me very early on that “happy” was a choice. I would sing it as an adolescent and knew that I often didn’t think I was very happy. I was focused inward. On me. On circumstances. On friends or the lack-thereof.
I stood (usually at Ned Brown’s prompting) or sat during worship as I went through high school and would sing those words. Again, often not “feeling” very happy.
We get too hung up on that word. We think WE know what generates it—or might, if our circumstances were different.
But I am happy. Or more importantly, content. I used to get those confused. Challenges in my past, challenging relationships, difficult circumstances, unsure endings, or just plain frightening possibilities; they weren’t there to thwart my happiness but were all designed to hone my ability to be content.
“I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.” Philippians 4:12&13
Content doesn’t mean perfect. It doesn’t mean not desiring and not asking the Lord to intercede in situations and problems. And it’s a tricky balance, but have to try and make my petitions known WITHOUT a sense of wishing today away. It has always been hard for me to look forward with a healthy desire and at the same time, enjoy and live in this moment. That hard moment. The moment I’d rather not be in, usually!
It sounds like voodoo or magic, perhaps, but I really do feel that His love for me, and the grace He has extended to me personally, does fill me with happiness
AND I KNOW IT!
I’m keenly aware of the choices I’m making.