I've been doing a lot of reflecting on what makes me happy. What truely makes me giddy inside. Of course, my husband, my friends and family make me happy but if none of that existed, what would I, alone, have to make me happy?
It seams like when I have these periods of deep reflection, God gives me more resources to help me through the contemplation. And this morning, The Today Show had a segmant on what makes someone happy. They said the majority of people think what makes them happy is something big like vacationing, a wedding, the birth of their child, etc. However they say we need to focus on the small things. The little things that we experience throughout the day.
Does technology make me happy? I can sit and watch a good movie and be happy, but vegging out in front of the television for hours will give me anxiety and guilt for the things I should have been doing instead of watching mindless junk.
One thing The Today Show also touched on was taking pictures. If you're too focused on taking the perfect picture at the part, you're not focusing on the party, you're focusing on the picture and you tend to not enjoy yourself or feel like you've missed out.
We need to recognize when things are going well, look at the glass half full rather than half empty.
I think the key is to limit yourself on the good stuff. If you have ice cream every day, it no longer becomes a luxury. If you watch TV all day long, it no longer becomes fun, it becomes mundane.
But ultimately, I believe that God made us to serve one another. This is what makes us happy. Volunteers, while often get burnt out, will still say they love serving in their volunteer position. This is because human nature is to serve another.
People ask all the time, "Why would God make humans?" I believe it's because it makes Him happy. As much as we screw up, we still make Him happy. AND He loves to serve us. He sent His son to be a servant of His people and to make the ultimate sacrifice. God loves to serve His children. He loves to love us, to encourage us, to motivate us, to create for us. Happiness isn't stuff, it's not reliant on another person...happiness is found in loving God and loving your neighbor. Shifting the focus from what makes
me happy to what kind I do to make someone else happy. God created us to live in community. He wants us have fellowship. That's why people who live by themselves in the woods are usually cranky. He created us to find joy in other people. I've found in my marriage that if I'm the one getting served and not reciprocating...I become board and I want more. I get to this point of never being satisfied...I get cranky and bitchy (that's right, I'm a pastor's wife and I just said bitchy). However, if I flip that around and start serving the one I love, the joy I get out of that is 10-fold.