Summary: Is there a way to experience all day delight?
INTRO.- ILL.- HAPPILY EVER AFTER? Paul Thigpen wrote an article for CHRISTIANITY TODAY entitled, “Happily Ever After?” He wrote, “Down in Georgia they have a saying: ‘If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.’ It’s a reminder that one person’s moods affect the entire household, but indirectly it points to a larger problem. The truth is, Mama never can stay completely happy, and neither can Daddy. In short, ain’t nobody happy for long.”
He further said, “We find joy in the sense of delight that comes from being in the presence of someone or something we love. It’s based on our encounter with something. Happiness possesses; joy appreciates. Happiness grasps; joy beholds.”
ARE YOU HAPPY? Chances are, you’re not happy. At best, only a little happy.
ILL.- Dennis Wholey, author of "Are You Happy?" reports that according to expert opinion, only 20 percent of Americans are happy.
One prominent psychiatrist said, "Happiness is an imaginary condition, formerly attributed by the living to the dead, now usually attributed by adults to children and by children to adults." In other words, happiness is something that we think someone else has.
We think or say, "He must be happy. Look at his job. Look at the car he drives, the house he lives in, the money he has, etc."
IS A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF HAPPINESS POSSIBLE IN THIS LIFE? Yes, I think it is. But it is not found where most people are looking for it.
ILL.- Someone said, “It is wrong to assume that men of immense wealth are always happy.” Martha Stewart is not a happy woman. She has been worth a billion dollars, but not now. However, she’s got far money than most of us could ever dream of having. But she’s not happy now and has never appeared to be a happy woman.
We tend to equate happiness with great wealth or material possessions, but that isn’t true.
There is nothing wrong with enjoying the good things that God has created. But if our emphasis is merely on material things and doing things, life will not provide much joy. If our lives are centered on the gift rather than the giver, we will miss the greatest gift of all.
I Timothy 6:17 "Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment."
God does provide good things for our enjoyment in this life, but our greatest enjoyment should come from knowing Him! Without Him there would be no wealth, no material gifts, no jobs, no hobbies, no sports, no enjoyment at all.
ILL.- T. M. Moore in "Encounter with God" wrote, “When I was a kid, a favorite pastime was to take in the Saturday matinee. It didn’t matter much what was on. I’d head to the snack bar and plunk down my nickel for a Holloway’s All-Day Sucker. Now I was set. This caramel delight would last me through the entire movie, all the way home, into the evening, and I’d still have some left for the next day."
Brothers and sisters, wouldn’t it be great if we could experience all day delight like that of an all-day sucker? Is lasting joy a possibility? Is all day delight possible?