The road traffic seems back to normal in Tucson a year after the Corona virus panic.
Ernie, Ivy, and I are heading to work, we’re carpooling. I’m driving. Ernie is sitting in the passenger seat and Ivy is in the back seat.
I hadn’t driven too far when Ernie said, “I’ve got a question. What makes you happy?”
I quipped, “Getting to work and back home safely.”
He ignored me and kept talking. “Generally, I think someone’s circumstances dictate happiness.”
Ivy said, “Yes, that’s true.”
I mumbled, “Hmm.”
“But are favorable circumstances the key to happiness?” Ernie continued.
Here we go, I thought. “I agree with Ivy. A person’s good or bad circumstances determine happiness, right?”
“OK, but should circumstance dictate happiness?”
Ivy spoke up. “It may not be the best but it’s what we do… what I do.”
“I know. I admit, I’ve done that too,” Ernie said. “But I’ve been thinking something else other than circumstances should be the source of my happiness.”
“Like what?” I asked.
“One fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5,” he said.
“Which one of the nine do you suggest, Ernie?” I pressed.
Ivy asked, “Why joy?”
Ernie looked at her in the backseat over his left shoulder and said, “Because it’s God’s plan for us.”
“What!?” I questioned.
“I think happiness has everything to do with the joy alive inside us.”
“How so?” Ivy said.
We were almost at our downtown workplace. The traffic hadn’t been too bad. For that I smiled, but we hit too many red lights… for that I frowned.
Ernie answered, “It’s because God lives inside followers of Jesus. That ought to make us joyful, thus happy. No matter what we’re going through.”
Ivy and I glanced at each other in the rear-view mirror. Both of us saw the wisdom in what Ernie said. “Yes… I get it,” we agreed.
As I pulled into my parking space, the day felt happier.
What’s your source of happiness?
Too often mine’s been circumstances.
Happiness depended on my current situation. That could mean how much money I made. Whether my home life was crisis free. Or if a half gallon of milk cost more or cost less.
Yep, happiness for me was circumstantial.
I needed something bigger than what happened day to day.
I thought deep about Ernie’s thought that joy should be my foundation for happiness.
It’s true, there is no greater case for happiness than the joy of Christ’s kingdom living within me.
How about for you?
Thanks for listening to Lee’s Nite Radio.
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