Race to Happiness
Recently I heard that studies show people think they are going to be happier in the future, more so than they are now. And the feeling that things are getting better typically creates an atmosphere of growth. This brings me to one conclusion: In order to grow, we must press on in hopes of what is to come.
When Paul was imprisoned in Rome, he wrote to the Philippians (with THEE best attitude, which I may never understand!). In the Epistle, Chapter 3:13 (NLT), he says “…I focus on this one thing: forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead.” In verse 16 he goes on to say, “But we must hold on to the progress we’ve already made”.
So, forget the past, focus on the progress.
From my own experience, when we are consumed with looking ahead, we fail to live in the moment. If we always believe we will be happier in the future, we will never achieve true happiness because the future will always be a distant place. So how can we achieve true happiness?! (Glad you asked.) Through Hope!
The Message version of Philippians 3:15 Paul instructs:
“So let’s keep focused on that goal, those of us who want everything God has for us.”
Okay, so forget the past, focus on the progress AND the goal!
As Christians our hope is in Christ. He holds our future. As much as we attempt to run the race with our own strength and wisdom, it cannot happen without him. We must press on, running towards the hope of what God has for us (the goal), not forgetting what he has already done, and how far we’ve come (the progress). THAT brings me joy. I find happiness in that moment; right at the intersection of how far I’ve come but not knowing exactly lies ahead. All I know is that I want everything God has for me. This is where God has currently placed me in my life. He has brought me to that exact location in that exact intersection and it’s beautiful. Being fully content with the race God has me running and still have the hindsight to smile at the experience of my past but not focus on it. A past that I no longer have to be ashamed of or hide from, but a past that has molded me into the woman I am right now; THAT'S PROGRESS! Here I am! Standing in the intersection, GROWING as I look ahead and prepare for what God has coming just for me.
Oh but wait- this journey isn’t easy! It requires discipline and wisdom. If anyone has ever participated in a race of any kind, you understand that showing up without training is not the best idea. Leading up to the race you must be disciplined in your preparation for the big day and gain the wisdom to know where you’re going. Crossing the finish line is not your starting point. It’s the journey that gets you there.
Thus, what God has showed me is that true happiness is achieved by understanding three things: Hope, Wisdom & Discipline. This is a three part series that will break down the three keys of happiness. So check back for the upcoming posts or subscribe now on the Contact page to get an automatic emails.
Thank you for reading my Finding Grace journal.
Enjoy the journey!