4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Philippians 4: 4-8
What makes you happy? When we think of happiness it often evokes visions of unwrapped gifts setting under a Christmas tree, taking a walk hand in hand with the one you love, being surprised on your birthday, sharing a laugh from the heart with a good friend, or finally getting to go to a destination that has always been a desire of yours.
We can make chasing happiness a lifelong pursuit, how do you make yourself happy, by spending money, collecting things, or searching for new experiences? If our happiness depends on our circumstances and how well things are going, then what happens when the toy’s rust, a loved one dies, health deteriorates, money is scarce and the party is over? When our happiness is determined by what we have in this life, when happiness is gauged by how good the day is working out, it often flees at the first sight of turmoil and its absence leaves the door wide open to despair.
In contrast to happiness, stands joy. Running deeper and stronger, joy is the quiet, confident assurance of God’s love and work in our lives—that he will be there no matter what. Happiness depends on happenings, but joy depends on Christ. This spring season our sermon series will concentrate on the gospel accounts of the Lord’s resurrection and we will also use the popular book “Leading Causes of Life” to help us embrace a more peaceful, joyful, abundant life. We encourage everyone to take this spiritual journey with us, to rededicate your-self to finding joy in Christ, to rededicate yourself to be constantly present in worship, to rededicate yourself to the “Word”, its study and application to your life. Together, through prayer, petition and thanksgiving we can encourage each other and encounter the risen Christ who desperately wants us to know the joy he has to offer, Jesus desires us not to just survive life, but to live life abundantly in his peace.
Peace be with you,
Pastor Scott and Pastor Jenny