People talk about common sense — basic wisdom for living well. But people also need happy-sense — the insight to live happy.
Much unhappiness is self-made. Everyday decisions are determining your destiny: joy, mediocrity, or misery. To stop doing, thinking, and saying things that hurt/harm us and/or others makes more sense than to keep it up. Ramifications are reaped in life (good or bad) based on how you choose to behave and they will create happiness or misery for you and others.
Self-denial makes more sense than seeking satisfaction through self-destructive behaviors. Doing right makes more sense that doing wrong and suffering negative consequences. Being set free from self-destructive behaviors makes more sense than bragging on them. Repentance makes more sense than continuing to do what’s making you unhappy.
Knowing God’s will is easier and than people think. Obeying it makes more sense than ignoring it.
Being kind to people makes more sense than being mean to them. Praying for others makes more sense than having bad feelings about them. Forgiving others makes more sense than holding on to bitterness toward them. Honest humility makes more sense than struggling to keep up appearances.
Admitting you’re wrong makes more sense than trying to change the truth. Letting the Bible show me where I’m wrong, is wiser than using it to prove I’m right. Conforming my beliefs to the Bible makes more sense than conforming the Bible to your beliefs. I read the Bible like a love letter from God calling me to surrender my life and will to His care.
Joy comes when we put self on the shelf and follow the risen Jesus instead. The joy of following the risen Jesus makes more sense than despair. Trusting in Jesus makes more sense than giving in to hopelessness. Jesus fills me with inner riches of peace & joy, that money could never buy. If your heart ever gets even one glimpse of Jesus, you’ll be forever changed. Then you will know that self-forgetting makes more sense than self-focus does.
Beyond both low self-esteem & pride is a Christ-focus that leads to self-forgetting. Surrendering your life to God’s care makes more sense than our weak attempts at self-care. So here’s the key to real happiness: Take your selfie & surrender it to Jesus.
It’s popular to say “Love yourself,” but Jesus taught “Deny yourself.” Christ calls us to bring self under subjection to Him. When we put self up front, it blocks out the Son shine! When Christ and self conflict; always choose Christ. “No Lord” is an oxymoron. Lord means “absolute Master,” but saying “no” denies it.
Self-love & self-hatred are both stuck in self-focus. Self-forgetting surrenders self. To forget about yourself & focus on others is to become untangled from unhappiness. To forgive yourself, while turning away from God’s forgiveness, is futile. To get beyond guilt, we need God’s forgiveness; not denial or self-justification. Stealth-self takes self off your radar & lets you give your all to the risen Jesus.
To stay stuck in self is to miss true wealth. To ignore God’s wisdom is to embrace unhappiness.
The Gospels show Jesus teaching people by interactive facilitation not just lecture. Ekklesia is a group appointment with Jesus, not a religious program. Ekklesia is a town meeting in the kingdom of God. It’s a great place to learn wisdom.