Happiness can be Fleeting, Joy is Forever

As I was praying this morning,  happiness came to thought.  For me so often, that exhilarating feeling follows purchase of a new car or dress, planning for an upcoming event or vacation or something else that can seem temporary.  Then I began to think about joy, which comes from within and has nothing to do with the human scene but comes when gratitude and humility fill my heart.  Daily I pray with Psalms 51:10 which reads “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”

Peace and harmony come from within, not without and is also the natural state of being.  This, I think, is our rightful inheritance.

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Our True Inheritance

This morning the verse of the day is Matthew 25:34 which reads, “Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”  So many of us live our lives waiting for “the other shoe to drop” while inheritance means to take possession of what is rightly ours.  Expectancy of Good shows us that Good everywhere as fear of bad brings that into our experience.  We are always at choice!  Gratitude, humility and Love hold the key to joy and happiness!  Today, I will claim my Divine Inheritance.

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Supply

So often it is tempting to think our supply is limited, when, in fact, it is omnipresent and unlimited.  One may think that his supply comes from an employer, a spouse, an inheritance, etc. but that is only when our thoughts are closed and negative.  When Jesus was asked about paying taxes, Matthew 17:27 reads, “Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou has opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee.”  That, to me, shows me that our supply can come from any place when we fill our thoughts with gratitude.  Gratitude brings riches, not just sometime but all the time!  Today I will be grateful for everything.

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The Prodigal Son

Recently I read “The Return of The Prodigal Son” written by Henri J. M. Nouwen, a priest enamored with the Painting of the Prodigal Son by Rembrandt.  The book goes into great depth and was very thought-provoking.  Seven of my friends met to discuss this book, which was very enlightening.  After reading this story countless times, I would relate to the wayward son and then the son who stayed home, but I had missed so much.  It never dawned on me that the son who claimed his inheritance was saying he wanted his Father dead, but that was exactly what he was saying.  An inheritance comes upon someone’s death.  Then I never realized how very dark the older son must be when he was very jealous and certainly not forgiving of his brother upon his return.

Never had I realized that I needed to become more like the Father, who was so forgiving and compassionate upon the return of the younger son.  The author thought three ways to a truly compassionate fatherhood would be grief, forgiveness and generosity.  That gave me pause and I have been  looking at those qualities this last week.

Luke 15:22 reads, “But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quickly  bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet:  and bring the fattened calf, kill it and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.’ And they began to celebrate.”

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The Prodigal Son

As I ponder the story of the prodigal son, the younger son who took his inheritance and lived foolishly and wastefully, when he recognized his predicament and called out for help, his Father was looking for him.  It doesn’t say how long he was gone and it really doesn’t matter because God is just waiting for our call.

Titus 3:5 reads, “He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy.  He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit.”

When we ask God for bread (understanding) we are never given a stone (hardness of heart).  Man is never, ever separated from God.

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