Being miserable is a choice.
There is no real correlation between suffering and misery.
You would expect those that experience more external and uncontrollable suffering would have the greatest amounts of internal suffering and vice versa.
Sometimes this is true, but sometimes it’s not.
All the days of the oppressed are miserable, but a cheerful heart has a continual feast.Proverbs 15:15
There is a type of person who is always miserable no matter what. Every day is a drudgery. In much or in little, there’s always something to bemoan.
But there is another type of person who seems to have an inner wellspring of joy and happiness untouched by external circumstance.
A person who echoes the spirit of Paul when he said,
For I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know both how to have a little, and I know how to have a lot…Philippians 4:11
I just want to encourage and remind you today that no matter what you are going through…you don’t have to be miserable.
I’m not trying to diminish your suffering. Life is truly hard at times. I just want to encourage you not to let it steal more from you than it has to.
Being miserable really is a choice… but maybe a better way of saying it is this: being content, joyful, thankful, and deeply happy is a muscle. You can choose to grow your muscles or you can choose not to… it’s your choice.
2 Peter tells us this:
His divine power has given us everything required for life and godliness through the knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness. By these He has given us very great and precious promises, so that through them you may share in the divine nature…2 Peter 1:3-4
You have everything you need right now to live a full and divine life.
It’s your choice whether or not you’re going to take advantage of this offer.
If you are an unbeliever, you can have access to this at any time. Jesus wants to help you live life to its fullest… however, it does require His assistance. You can’t be truly unmiserable on your own.
In fact, Paul continues in the Philippians passage above by saying this:
I have learned the secret of being content —whether well fed or hungry, whether in abundance or in need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.Philippians 4:12
Do you want to have a deep joy and happiness that isn’t hitched to the rollercoaster ride of life circumstances? You can only have that with Christ’s help. Apart from him there is no abiding meaning or purpose. It’s just a jumble of happenstance… of pointless pain and pointless pleasure… of pointless highs and pointless lows.
If you are a believer, you need to give yourself a swift kick in the bo-hiney and gratefully embrace the gift of joy that Christ is giving you! You’ve gotta be spending time in His Word and with the people of God so that you can know and remember “His very great and precious promises.” It’s by dwelling on these promises that we are able to partake in the divine nature.
Everyday you have the opportunity to live a supernatural life. You need to seek out and know the promises of God in order to fix your eyes on what is unseen.
So we do not fix our eyes on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.2 Corinthians 4:18
By doing so, you dull the sting of hardship in this world because you are aware that there is a greater reality at play. Also, the joys here don’t seem so ultimate anymore. This might seem like a bad thing, but it’s actually really good news because it guards you from the fear and misery of losing them. In Christ, you are connected to joy that you can never lose and something that will never be taken away from you. A joy that doesn’t dull with time, but grows and flourishes.
Choose today to press into the abundant life that Jesus is offering you.
What very great and precious promise of God is stirring up the divine nature in YOUR life?
For me it’s the fact that “we do not have an enduring city here; instead we seek the one to come.” – Hebrews 13:14
The best is yet to come. That promise is helping me participate in the divine nature every day. It’s fueling the running of my race. I hope that this promise stirs up something in you today too.