What makes you happy?
I like to sing and dance, playing games, travel and interacting with others. But I wouldn’t exactly call that a road map to happiness.
Fortunately, Christ did provide us with a clearer more accurate way to be happy. It’s found in his Sermon on the Mount… in the beatitudes. In Latin beatus, where English gets the word “beatitude” means “to be happy” or “to be blessed.” (Topical Guide) Thus this sermon is the ultimate self-help guide for happiness. In ten short verses, the Savior gives us the formula for happiness. In less than one minute you could read this power punched sermon. Yet with so many people having read and studied it, why is there still unhappy people?
First, we read it too fast. We don’t take the time to ponder the master teachers meaning and application. I think there is a great lesson before the lesson even begins. 1 aAnd seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him:
Christ goes up to the mountain. He gets himself set. When I looked in the dictionary to define the word “set” there were 25 definitions! I will allow you to search what they mean. But Jesus gets himself set. Then the disciples “come unto him.” Well, we know Jesus was already on top of the Mount. They had to “come up” to Jesus. In the pursuit of happiness, true lasting happiness, I always have to “go up” to Jesus. There are different ways I “go up.” The temple has always been such a place of rising up to meet my Savior. I love the teachings and specific lessons He provides for me there.
Taking time to be totally quiet. Start my day with a quiet reflection. A meditation, (I prefer guided meditation for my wondering mind.) But before I am tempted to react to any of my surroundings, I find already practicing calm and gentle reactions assist me in maintaining calm. What are some of the ways you “come up” to Jesus?
It’s important to remember that the beatitudes are not isolated statements. They are “”interrelated and progressive in their arrangement” (Bible Dictionary) Thus, you must start at the beginning. If one part of the happiness formula is beyond your reach… back up to teaching before. Honestly, I find a lot of my problems go back to the hunger and thirst after righteousness. The strength and power I get by feasting and seeking the word of God nourish me to endure all that life can throw at me. However, being poor in spirit is where I recognize my mortal limits and how I need Jesus to help me transform my weakness into the strengths he needs me to have. Also, sometimes I just need to mourn… I need to cry so He can comfort me. To acknowledge that my spirit has no limits but often is confused by my temporary physical forms limitations.
So lets look at this formula for happiness.
7 Blessed are the amerciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
Now that you read it do you know the formula for happiness? What is truly going to make you happy?
This isn’t the same information that I have found in other self-help books that I have read. I know this is true. I know it is the truth that will set you free. The problem is that I have to work harder to find out what teachings are packed into this short happiness sermon.
How are Jesus’s teachings different from other ways people try to find happiness?