I have been in (and out) of church all my life. As a child we lived right next to a church and my older sisters and I would walk over for Sunday school and special events frequently, although not faithfully. During my school years church was a place for me to be with like-minded teens, and where I fit in. During my college years, like a lot of people, church was a place that I only went to for special events and holidays.
My faith is a big part of who I am. During my roughest times in life, God and my connection with my faith, has helped me to make it through. I am going to admit, I am nowhere close to where I think I should be (that is why one month in the future I will be committing the whole month to faith and spirituality).
During this month of commitment and discipline, I have the goal of reading and studying my Bible every day. I have also been listening to Andy Stanley, Your Move, on Youtube. Today I watched one that was called “The Secret to Contentment”. There were two comments that really stuck with me. “Chasing more leads to wanting more. Less is more when the less you hold is what you were created for” and “I will not chase the wind. I will run my race in my lane”. I’ll get back to these two comments because they tie into what I’m about to share. I’m also reading a book called Resisting Happiness by Matthew Kelly. In his book he says “there is a direct connection between happiness and holiness” he also says “When I did something that I knew was God’s will, something that would clearly help me become a-better-version-of-myself, I was filled with joy” “Every moment of everyday, every situation, every person we encounter is an opportunity to become a-better-version-of-ourselves.”
Ok, so this is what I get from these two separate sources of information; It’s important to be content, striving for a higher purpose and doing my best. I will be happier if I stay in my lane and do what I can, when I can, however I can.
As I think back to the days when I was faithful in my spiritual practices I found contentment and a sense of belonging. I was (and still am) a part of a family. We share our lives together. I am supported and loved by my God as he takes care of me through the good and the bad. I know that everything has a purpose.
I also like to think that when we strive for a higher purpose that it benefits all of us. That when we care about others that it leads to the greater good. We are not just focused on instant gratification, we are able to work and wait for what truly is important.
Doing my best…… becoming a better version of who I am. This has nothing to do with other people. So often we compete with everyone else. Andy Stanley talks about being “smart-er, pretty-er, rich-er” and how it is like chasing the wind. We will always be chasing it. Matthew Kelly encourages us to just be “a better version of ourselves.” In my journey to be happier it is about what I do to be a better version of myself, and in the long run I know that means connecting (and committing) to my faith and spiritual life, not chasing the wind.
I know that for me, God is and always has been the source of my true happiness. Happiness…. It’s a God thing!