Benjamin Franklin was concluding a moving speech on the guarantees of the Constitution when a heckler shouted, “Those words don’t mean anything. Where’s all the happiness you said it guarantees us?” Franklin smiled and calmly silenced his critic.
“My friend, the Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness; you have to catch it yourself.”
Jesus, expounded this same teaching with the Beatitudes (Matthew 5). When we read Blessed are you, we are reading and hearing вЂњHappy are you:вЂќ
Try reading the scriptures below by replacing Blessed with Happy and catch happiness.
And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
3) Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 )Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
5) Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
6) Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
7) Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
8) Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
9) Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
10) Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11) Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Many of us have read and reread and even memorized the Beatitudes from early childhood and yet at times finding ourselves very unhappy in different situations.
For exercise letвЂ™s take vs. 9 (MSG) and read it this way, вЂњ Blessed (Happy) are you when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. ThatвЂ™s when you discover who you really are, and your place in GodвЂ™s family.вЂќ
I have realized more and more how joy and happiness are there for the taking. I understand it quite well now. I have a bicycle, treadmill and other such things sitting in my home. Yes, thatвЂ™s right, mine, paid in full, in my home, beautiful, lovely decorations. If I want the benefit of these items I need to do something. Would you agree?
So it is with happiness! Just sitting in your home, paid for by the Blood of The Lamb, Jesus Himself. The question is do you want happiness or are you content with misery?
Warning! вЂњMisery loves company.вЂќ But, happy and blessed are you when you run from misery and induce His Peace to those around you.
“My friend, the Bible guarantees us the right to pursue happiness; you have to catch it yourself.” Happiness is a journey…not a destination.