Passing Thoughts: Choose Joy – Philippians 4:4
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Philippians 4:4
I don’t know where I first heard the saying, but my guess would be from my dad. “You can get happy in the same pants you got mad in.” If he didn’t say exactly that to my siblings and me, he and my mother certainly told us repeatedly to “adjust our attitude.” That is an uncommon truth today, this idea that our emotions follow our intellect. If we have a bad attitude, if things are going wrong, or if we are being ill-treated by others, we dwell in unhappiness or anger or anxiety. But happiness is a choice. Circumstances come and go, and if we wait for the perfect set of circumstances to be happy, our happiness is fleeting at best, and the opportunity for anger, anxiety, and/or depression increases. However, we can choose happiness, not a facile, self-deluded sort of happiness, but a real happiness born of the reality of God. There is a God, and He is not us. He measures our yesterdays and holds our tomorrows, so today, we can rejoice in Him. We can be at ease and let go of what we cannot control. Control was always an illusion anyway. But since we are God’s children, we are free to choose happiness, even when circumstances are not what we want. I need to remember that more often. Thank You, Lord.
Rev. Elizabeth Moreau