The scripture I want to start with is (Proverbs 15:13-14) A happy heart makes a face cheerful, but heartache crushes the spirit. A discerning heart seeks knowledge.”

When you are happy, it will reflect on your face: it’s a glow, a radiance. When I think of that glow and radiance I think of a young lady who is a part of our church family.  Her name is Joy and her name fits her perfectly! When she enters a room the whole room lights up around her because she is filled with joy and it lights up her face.

Again, a happy heart makes a face cheerful, but heartache crushes a spirit. Heartache will crush your dreams, it will steal your joy, dampen your faith. It will bring you down and show on your face. However, there  is a solution for this as the scripture goes on to say “…a discerning heart seeks knowledge.” That knowledge is found in the word of God. Discernment is the ability to discern spiritual truths and to then apply them to your life. 

As a Christian spiritual discernment is a decision-making process, where the Holy Spirit is guiding us to make the best decisions.

It’s a choice. It’s a point of view. It’s a way of thinking.

All my life people have said that I look at the world through rose-colored glasses. It is not a place of delusion (although I’ve had my moments), but it truly is my focus.

The reason I do that is that it makes me happy. For instance with people — I have the tendency to see the best in them. It’s a choice I make because it makes me happy. Not that I don’t see people’s flaws — because I do — but focusing on that just doesn’t feel good to me. Focusing on their flaws could maybe frustrate me or sadden me or even anger me, whereas focusing on what is good makes me happy.

One of the things I love about being a Christian is that God is transforming me daily. The flaws I see in myself and others won’t necessarily be there one month, six months, or a year from now. It may even take a couple of years, but I have that hope that it will change.

Happiness and hope go hand in hand. 

That hope is found in the word of God (2 Corinthians 3:18) “And we … are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.”

And what really makes me happy is that I can help that process happen. I’ve found by seeing the best in people it brings out the best in them. I let the Word and the Holy Spirit do what they do best: break those patterns off and transform us.

That’s why I come down so hard on gossip. It hinders the work of the Holy Spirit. When we are focused on what is wrong with someone and then compound it by speaking it out to others, people pick up on that and they feel judged. People then have the tendency to harden their hearts, and that can hinder transformation. And the person that is gossiping is less apt to see their own shortcomings because they are so focused on someone else’s flaws.  Everyone loses!

Happiness is a choice, it is a way of thinking!

Romans 12:2 “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

We renew our minds as we meditate on the Word of God. It’s choosing to not set your thoughts on the uproar and the confusion that we see going on in the world today. A renewed mind is filled with God’s promises and hope. 

Again, Hope and Happiness go hand and hand. You have to filter what you are taking in. If you watch the news all day it will affect your thought life. Hope is not found in the news! The news is filled with a world that is a place of sheer chaos and the news highlights stories to pit one group against another. Watching the news to be informed and to know how to pray is okay, but true hope is not found there. Our hope is found in our faith; our hope is found in Jesus.

Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”

Jesus’s words John 16:24 “Ask and you shall receive, and your joy may be complete.”

Speaking to God about everything brings us joy. In the presence of God is the fullness of joy, and when you seek him daily you can experience that throughout the whole day.

Remember, Happiness and Hope go hand in hand!

Romans 15:13 “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”