So they ask, ‘Why are you so happy?’

Happy is he that has the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God: (Psa 146:5)

Our greatest witness to those about us may be our happiness. We have a great opportunity to preach when people ask us why we are so happy all the time, so we then can explain we serve the Living God, we have great hope for a good future, and our lord is returning soon.

The key ingredient to happiness is lost in the modern competitive world. So many mistake personal achievement for happiness. But in a competition of individuals only one wins, and none can win all the time, so there is much discontent. The whole ethos of our world now leads to discontent. But as the servants of God we may have contentment in giving thanks. From Paul who gave up all gain,

But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out. And having food and raiment let us be therewith content. (1Ti 6:6-8)

The proof of contentment is that there be no complaining, as a recent powerful exhortation brought out to our ecclesia that Israel’s great failing in the wilderness was that they complained..

Rid me, and deliver me from the hand of strange children, whose mouth speaks vanity, and their right hand is a right hand of falsehood: That our sons may be as plants grown up in their youth; that our daughters may be as corner stones, polished after the similitude of a palace: That our garners may be full.:..that there be no complaining in our streets. Happy is that people, that is in such a case: yea, happy is that people, whose God is the LORD. (Psa 144:11-15)

The modern world seems to encourage a self-focus. This is a way to great unhappiness as it leads to self-esteem issues. Our focus on serving others makes for great happiness in selflessness.

Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves. Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (Php 2:3-4)

There is ethos that values those who gather and heap together for themselves, yet such actions only lead to poverty of the whole society eventually. Israel were taught to leave parts of the crops for the poor. They were taught also to give to God of their increase. We cannot do that, but we can be happy ‘givers’ rather than unhappy ‘takers’. Even the poorest of us should have enough to eat and a place to sleep, as this was promised us. If we have more than this, there is a blessing to those who give, in that they are given. We may have faith in this. It was promised to us!

Give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again. (Luke 6:38)

If nothing else we may give to others the most precious thing we have – which is our hope. Of our hope we may give again, and again, to others, and have more of it!

But this I say, He which sows sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which sows bountifully shall reap also bountifully. Every man according as he purposes in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work: (As it is written, He has dispersed abroad; he has given to the poor: his righteousness remains for ever. Now he that ministers seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;) (2Co 9:6-10)

As opposed to advertising which encourages coveting, there seems a special blessing of happiness to those who give good as they are able,

He covets greedily all the day long: but the righteous gives and spares not. (Pro 21:26)
He that has a bountiful eye shall be blessed; for he gives of his bread to the poor. (Pro 22:9)

There is that scatters, and yet increases; and there is that withholds more than is meet, but it tends to poverty. The liberal soul shall be made fat: and he that waters shall be watered also himself. (Pro 11:24-25)

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