Fence Post of Faith March 2014

When you win big at a barrel race do you get a sense of happiness? Sure that’s  our whole goal to is to have a great run, hopefully place in one of the D’s and pick up a check! It a great feeling, were even happy when we are just off one-thousands of a sec of the leader. But let me ask you what really promises you happiness? Some find happiness in a great run, some find happiness in a young colt making a good run, and some find happiness owning a big rig, nice truck. But what really brings happiness?

On the spiritual side of life does the Bible promise Happiness? There is many precious promises for Christians but does God promise us happiness in this life?

The word happiness is based upon “happenings” and what happens in this life is certainly not always happy. In fact, Jesus said in John 16:33” I have told you these things so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart I have overcome the world.” Peace Joy, is not the same thing as happiness because happiness is based upon hardships in this life.

It’s kind of like that horse you run knowing that he has something greater in side, you know his bloodline, you know his potential and you keep running him. As humans we have the same thing, and Acts 14:32 says, ”We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God.” Paul says in Corinthians 6:4 “Rather as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way; in great endurance, in troubles, hardships and distress”.

Just like winning that big barrel race, it’s the same for us humanly. Don’t fool yourself or others believing that once you become a Christian, all things will be blissfully happy. This is a myth, Matt. 7 tells us to “Enter by the narrow gate; is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it”.

Over the years many great barrel racers have come and gone, maybe because they wanted to start at the top, only to just be remembered for a short period of time? Makes me believe there is a lesson in those troubles and trials.

Jesus said it would not be a happy experience or easy but difficult and narrow.  So if there is any easy way, a perceive happy way, it is the way that leads to destruction because it is like going down stream. You don’t need to resist sin, just take life nice and easy and you will be happy…but only until Judgment Day.

If there is a gospel that is preached that promises happiness and an easy way to Heaven, then you are hearing false gospel because many, even in Jesus’ day believed this. Jesus actually answered the question in Luke 13:23-25,” Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” He said to them, ”Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to. Once the owner of the house gets up and closes the door, you will stand outside knocking and pleading, “Sir, open the door for us.” But he will answer, Depart from Me for I never knew you. Here Jesus said that we are to “make every effort” indicating it will not come easily and that many will try to enter and will not be able to.

The many promises of God do not include being happy, entering the narrow way without effort, or having an easy blelievism like some falsely teach. The prosperity or wealthy gospel was never preached by Jesus or by the Apostles. There are many promises of God through and they include having Joy and peace which are not a temporary, fleeting feeling like happiness is.

What did Jesus say in John 14:27? “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world give. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”

Possessing the peace of God means possessing it forever! It is peace of mind in your salvation, your destination, and knowing your sins have been forgiven. Happiness is based upon what happens today but that peace of God which supersedes human understanding is as eternal as life to come.

The Bible nowhere promises us happiness in this life, but neither does the Bible say that life is fair. If life were fair, then we would all be headed south, and Jesus would not have had to die. Jesus’ death on the cross was not fair for He was innocent. God placed His wrath on Jesus who deserved no such punishment that we truly deserved was withheld because of what Jesus did for us. He did this for those of who didn’t’ deserve anything but eternal separation from God.

The moment we place our whole trust in Jesus Christ is the moment that we have that joy and peace while all feat evaporated. And we hear those words Jesus will say, “Come you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you the foundation of the world.

That will be beyond happiness.  I want to leave you with one more scripture that ties in with these thoughts, but I’m not going to write it out for you, I want “YOU” to go and read it, it’s Philippians 4:7-8
Do you want to be great in life and barrel racing? Then take the time to let God inside, be a Winner inside and Outside of the arena as well….
Adios Jeff Metcalf