Are You Enjoying Life?

In the melody of our life, the music is separated here and there by rests.   – John Ruskin


In music, as in life, a rest or a pause is a part of the making of the music. There are times when we must take a deliberate pause from the activities of life and the rapid pursuit of our dreams in order to rest and be still.


Recently, my husband and I had the opportunity to travel to Hawaii with his work. I must admit, at first I felt guilty for enjoying such a beautiful respite. As I sat by the pool reading one of Chip Ingram’s books, Good to Great in God’s Eyes, I came to chapter 8 entitled, “Enjoy Great Moments.” In this chapter, Chip expressed the importance of balance and the beauty of enjoying life. He wrote, “If heaviness is always the tone of your life, you’ll be out of balance, and a lot of other areas of your life will be negatively affected.”


He went on to say, “Here’s a question many Christians will never ask you: Are you enjoying your life? Are you deeply satisfied, drinking in rich experiences with people, places, and circumstances God is providentially surrounding you with?”


How kind our God is to allow me to read those very words as I took a rest from the rush of daily life and ministry. I needed a fresh reminder that it is not only good, but necessary to embrace the respite God provides in our lives. Yes, He leads us beside peaceful streams as our Good Shepherd (Psalm 23).


This week, I want to encourage you in two ways:

  1. Be deliberate about times of rest in your life. Don’t be afraid of the pauses, rather embrace them and allow yourself to enjoy them.
  2. Rejoice in the Lord. No matter what your circumstances, you can take joy in the fact that your Heavenly Father is with you and cares for you. He never changes. Take joy in Him and the love He has for you. The joy of the Lord is your strength.


Chip reminds us, “Being happy and finding satisfaction in life are gifts from God.” Don’t wait to enjoy life, embrace the blessings and great moments God gives you each and every day.


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Happiness or Success – Which Comes First?


How often have you thought to yourself, I’ll be happy when…
…I get the next promotion.
…my co-worker changes her attitude.
…I don’t have to do all of this paperwork.
…the kids grow out of this stage.
…my spouse says he’s sorry.
…I finally get in shape.

Whether it’s our weight or our work or our relationships, it’s easy to think that when things change for the better, then we will be happy. But that’s not what current research shows. In fact, it is the exact opposite! Positive psychology now demonstrates that those people who are happy and more positive, are more likely to be successful in relationships and in life. In his best-selling book, The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor shares, “Optimistic salespeople outsell their pessimistic counterparts by 56 percent. Students primed to feel happy before taking math achievement tests far outperform their neutral peers.”


When people are satisfied and content on the inside, it shows through their actions, attitudes and words. Happy people brighten the day for those around them instead of waiting for others to brighten theirs. Business leaders would be wise to consider ways to encourage internal joyfulness and satisfaction within their ranks. And each of us must recognize that we can’t just sit around and wait for happiness, we must choose it and experience it’s benefits.

True, heartfelt contentedness comes from within. The famous apostle Paul wrote, “I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.” Paul found his inner strength in the Lord. Where do you find yours?

For me personally, joyfulness is a natural outflow of having a deep and abiding relationship with God. Knowing that my sins are forgiven through faith in Jesus, recognizing that I am never alone, realizing that He has given me His spirit to guide and strengthen me – all of these reasons allow me to experience a hope, joy and peace within my life. Do I experience challenges and difficulties? You bet, but there is an inner strength that only God can provide.

If you are searching for happiness and an inner joy, I encourage you first to read the Bible for yourself and learn about the God who loves you. If you want to visit with someone about a relationship with Jesus go to

Happy Place

You will probably have no sympathy for me when I tell you that I spent this past week in Aruba. Beautiful beaches, perfect weather, delicious food – no wonder it’s called “The Happy Island.” Who wouldn’t be happy in such peaceful surroundings? Yet despite the temporary bliss of this island paradise, we all know that true happiness isn’t about finding the perfect sandy surroundings. Happiness is ultimately a matter of the heart. The Bible gives us a picture of joy and delight rooted in God Himself. The psalmist declared:

Oh, the joys of those who do not
    follow the advice of the wicked,
    or stand around with sinners,
    or join in with mockers.
But they delight in the law of the Lord,
    meditating on it day and night.
They are like trees planted along the riverbank,
    bearing fruit each season.
Their leaves never wither,
    and they prosper in all they do.  (Psalm 1)

Psalm 119 continues this joyful principle:

Joyful are people of integrity,
    who follow the instructions of the Lord.
Joyful are those who obey his laws
    and search for him with all their hearts.

And Proverbs gives us this reminder:

The hopes of the godly result in happiness. Proverbs 10:28

Jesus spoke of happiness in His famous Sermon on the Mount. The word “blessed” literally means, happy, supremely blessed, to be envied and spiritually prosperous with life-joy granted to the person who experiences salvation. Here’s what He said:

Blessed are the poor in spirit,
    for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
    for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
    for they will inherit the earth.
 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
    for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
    for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
    for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
    for they will be called children of God. (Matthew 5:3-9)

 Happiness begins when we come to the end of ourselves (poor in spirit) and find our hope and strength in the One who came to give us joy and peace. Yes, Jesus is the One who makes our hearts truly happy. He is not a paradise island, rather He is our rock, our righteousness, our refuge, our salvation.

To learn more about what the Bible has to say, check out Becoming a Woman of the Word.