TRPC Broadcast Email – Monday, March 23, 2020
I closed correspondence with another pastor the other day with “Remember, ministry is not a job… it’s an adventure.” She immediately emailed back that she completely agreed. Yesterday, for Timber Ridge it was indeed an adventure.
Timber Ridge held it’s first Zoom meeting! Where there problems? Of course. Was there success? Absolutely! We had six persons connected. And there were a few more that were unable to join due to computer settings and restrictions. We are working on that.
All in all, it was a joyful event. Was everyone happy? Maybe not. Was there joy to be found? Always! Frustrated by glitches in technology rarely produces happiness. However, knowing that it was a Sunday and we were striving to gather in worship of our Lord – is always joyful. Happiness is fickle and can leave you at the least frustration in life. Joy can be everlasting… if you allow it to be.
What does it take to make you happy?” The popular idea of happiness involves having the right circumstances. When I get a job, then I’ll be happy. When I get married, then I’ll be happy. When I have kids, then I’ll be happy. As life progresses and changes; so, do the things that make us happy. When the kids leave home, then I’ll be happy or when I start wearing “slip on shoes’ rather than those that need to be tied will be a relief.
As circumstances in life become difficult (such as now) happiness could be: Having enough hand sanitizer to keep you safe. Having enough milk for another bowl of cereal. The reassurance of good internet connection. And of course, finding a few rolls of long-lost toilet paper in the cabinet.
The interesting thing is that most of these events concern external situations instead of internal issues. Perhaps happiness isn’t the goal. At least not the way most people think of the word happiness. Joy is a much better word because it describes a state we can choose – regardless of our circumstances. Joy is a choice. You choose to be joyful — often despite your circumstances. Right now, regardless of what you are challenged by, you’re as joyful as you choose to be.
Life is difficult. There are a lot of things that don’t go right and don’t go your way in life. If your joy depends on everything going your way, you’ll be miserable most of the time. Joy is the settled confidence that God is in control of all the minutia of our lives, the truth that eventually everything is going to be all right. Our determined choice to praise God in all things… produces great joy! Real joy can be chosen, by faith, in any circumstance. Happiness is fleeting while joy is eternal.
Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.
(James 1:2-4 NIV)
Let us find joy, knowing we all rest in the Kingdom of God.
We missed a few birthdays due to this altered lifestyle we now live. The most important – Happy Birthday to our youth: Ella (3/17) and Bailey (3/22). We also remember Margaret Cathcart (3/17), Linda and Art Kuehne (3/24, 3/30), and Charles Armstrong (3/29). Remember, birthdays are good for your health. Studies have shown that people with more birthdays live longer!