Why can satan steal our happiness? How can we be joyful always? What’s the difference between joy and happiness?
Why is that? Why can Satan only steal your happiness and not your joy? The answer is simple: who/what is your source of happiness? What do you gravitate to? What excites you the most? Therein you will find your source of happiness.
Why is gladness fleeting?
Most of us find happiness in sources other than God. When our source of happiness is found in other people- meaning that we are expecting others, such as our spouse- to be our source of happiness/wholeness, we set ourselves up for failure.
Your spouse, your friends, your family… they are all great sources of support! But they cannot make you whole, and they can’t sustain your happiness. You can be happy being in their presence, and enjoy being around them. However, they cannot be your source. Why? Because it is inevitable that conflict will occur somewhere along the lines. And when it does, offense settles in.
Then, you are not happy. You are miserable. It’s not a sustainable source because people aren’t perfect.
What about other things being your source of happiness? Some find happiness in their career. Others, in raising their children. People have various hobbies or activities that they enjoy. Anywhere people receive praise they gravitate towards. So why is this source wrong?
While it’s good to enjoy what you do, it can’t be your source of happiness. What if you are let go? What if God wants to move you to a better job? Are you going to listen (“But God, it’s good here and I’m happy. I don’t want to move!). If God says, “It’s time to move. I need you here,” You need to move because wherever He places you, will far exceed your expectations. But you’ll miss it if your source is your job.
If your source is your kids, you will be disappointed. Someday, they will move away and begin a life of their own. They should be confident enough to leave the nest on their own. Leaving is a good thing when they are an adult. But parents who make their children their source will have a tough time letting go.
Hobbies and activities are great, but they can’t make you whole. You can enjoy doing them. But they can’t be a source of total happiness. If they were, your spouse may never see you! *lol*
Drawn to praise? Well, that can be a dangerous one! People who follow praise generally have low self-esteem. They don’t have a high self-concept and value what others say over what God says. They will flit from one thing to the other, but never attain happiness because they are broken from within.
The difference between Praise and Happiness
The difference is simple: the source. Happiness is found when we seek things outside of God for our joy. While they will momentarily make us happy, they aren’t enough to sustain that emotion. So the “high” that we experience is fleeting.
People, employment, praise, child-rearing, etc are all temporary sources. Also, they are imperfect sources, as well.
Joy, however, is found in the Lord. It is when we make Him our source, and learn who we are in Him that we experience true joy. When we know and believe what He says about us, who we are in Christ, and cast down lies spoken out against us, we will attain our joy.
Once God is our source, people are no longer our source. We won’t look to them to make us feel good… and they can’t make us feel bad, either.
Conflict won’t really bother you when you walk in joy. Someone’s attitude will have little impact. You won’t be defined by the external, but be made whole by the spiritual.
It’s the best way to live!
Sound good? Want to learn more?
Helen Murray discusses how not to let Satan (or others) steal your joy. She talk about what joy in the Lord really looks like. Most people say joy is difficult to attain because they equate it to happiness. Yet Helen will delve further into this discussion, and teach you how to walk in joy daily.
The feature and more in our next issue of Faith Filled Family Magazine coming out on April 26, 2020!