Summary: A Christian can experience happiness by having the right attitude and using the Beattitudes.
Happiness is connected to Be”attitudes” I !?
1. We all want to be happy.
Right? we want to go through life with a feeling of accomplishment that brings happiness. Happiness can be a short lived experience in life. Kinda like a kid buying a happy meal at McDonalds. Kids love happy meals don’t they?, It doesn’t matter where we were my kids all knew when we were close to a McDonalds. And the request was always the same, Dad I want a Happy Meal. And it never failed we would standing in line the kids pulling on my shirt saying “when is my happy meal coming, when is my happy meal coming.” They were so full of joy at the prospect of getting a happy meal. And then finally it would appear and we would sit down to eat. The kids would be so over joyed they would want to skip over the food in the meal and go right to the toy. They loved those cheap little toys, and they always had a toy box full of them. But their happiness would last about as long as their fascination with the toy. And that wasn’t very long. They would go off and play never wanting to eat all of the food in that Happy Meal. Then it would be time to go home, and they never wanted to go home. Right?, When it was time to go home their happiness was over. Well we are kind of like that, we make ourselves happy by buying things cars, houses, toys new tools new cookware new clothes new shoes but our happiness doesn’t last. We have all heard the expression money and possessions do not buy happiness. All of our lives we try to do things so that we will be happy. However, to our dismay we find out that these things do no bring happiness, instead we find ourselves surrounded by things that have no real meaning in our lives. People think that happiness can only be achieved when material and momentary conditions are met. People grow up thinking that all they need is a good job the perfect home, the perfect spouse, the perfect kids, the perfect church, the perfect car, the perfect education, when really all they need is Jesus. Amen. Don’t make that mistake all you kids. Yes those material things are nice but they are not absolutes. Is there something in your life that makes you happy? Or better yet, is there something missing in your life, that keeps you from being happy?
True happiness starts with the mind. Our Lord and Savior told us everything we need to make ourselves happy. All we need to be really happy is found in the Beattitudes. This may seem like a foolish idea. But 1 Cor 1:18 says “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” NIV
2. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
What does it mean to be poor in spirit. Does that mean to walk around with your head down feeling miserable or making yourself miserable? No, but it does mean that we recognize that we are spiritual paupers before a holy and righteous God. It means that we see the truth about who we really are. And that means we recognize how much we need God. Right? some of you are thinking I am not sure about that pastor sam. One day a publican and Pharisee went up to pray. One bragged about who he was and what he was and had been doing. The other stands before God and exclaims “Lord have mercy on me a sinner.” Which one was poor in spirit in his own eyes? Which received God’s blessing? Lord have mercy on me a sinner. That is what poor in spirit means. It is much more than being humble, much more than being polite, much more than being patient, much more than being kind, it is recognizing that you are a sinner in the hands of a loving Father. Being poor means emptying yourself of all those self righteous feelings you have. Emptying yourself of your proud righteousness realizing that we cannot make ourselves happy. It means to empty your heart and mind of all the junk the world puts in there. Emptying our hearts and minds of the selfish desires of our fleshly nature. Poor in spirit, poor in spirit means to depend on Jesus and not on your own knowledge, lean not on your own understanding. A lot of people are in danger of living there whole lives for naught. For nothing, because they rely too much on having it all figured out. Lean on Jesus. Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. For theirs is the kingdom of heaven. What does that mean? The kingdom of heaven is love, joy, peace….so on and so forth. I believe that is contentment, when you can experience love, joy and peace no matter what the circumstances you are content. The kingdom of heaven is here today and it is all eternity. Here today we can experience true love, joy and peace; we can experience the blessing of the kingdom of heaven. The kingdom of heaven does not depend on material things; it is contentment. 1 Timothy 6:16 says “But Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. How do we develop this attitude in our lives? James 4:7-10 says “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinner, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” In a nut shell Realize who you really are and be content with who you are and blessed you shall be. Amen.