Articles‎ > ‎

Become a "Carrier" (published in The Herald/Voice 10/25/12)

posted Sep 7, 2013, 1:17 PM by Fccea Webmaster
A guy sits on a psychiatrist's couch looking miserable. The psychiatrist says, "Look, making you happy is out of the question, but I can give you a compelling narrative for your misery."

Most of us don't want the narrative, we want happiness. So we search for it -- in things, success, recreation, relationships, pleasure, hobbies, travel, stimulants, and whatever else you want to throw on the pile. While these may bring temporary enjoyment, ample evidence suggests they can't bring lasting contentment.

There is a reason for that. Let me illustrate. A successful alumni group visits a retired college professor. Conversation inevitably turns to the stress in their lives.

The professor hosts them with a large pot of coffee and assorted cups -- ranging from plain porcelain to elegant china.

After everyone gets a cup, the professor observes, "You all know that the cup adds nothing to the quality of coffee, right? Yet, notice that you have taken all the china, leaving the plain cups behind."

Then he drew this analogy. "Life is the coffee; your jobs, position, relationships, possessions, money, hobbies and the like are the cups. The type of cup does not define, nor change, the quality of life a person lives. Yet, concentrating so on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee. Often, we expect the cup to enhance the coffee -- something it can never do.

He concluded, "The happiest people don't have the best of everything; they make the best of everything."

His point was clear. We can find temporary enjoyment in external things, but true happiness comes from within. You don't find happiness; you carry it with you.

Abraham Lincoln once said, "Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be." I'd modify that slightly to read, "Most folks are about as happy as their relationship with God allows."

Want to build happiness from within? Prov. 29:18 says, ". . . blessed (happy) is he who keeps the law." Get to know and obey God's Word, and happiness builds from the inside. You won't need a compelling narrative for your misery. You'll be carrier, not a taker.

A humorist named George Mikes decided to write a book on psychoanalysis. In preparation, he submitted to analysis himself. The psychologist began by asking whether Mikes had had a happy childhood. "I am still having a happy childhood," Mikes responded. So are faithful children of God.

By His Grace, Pastor Dave