You Don’t Have to Be Happy All the Time
By Rick Warren
“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens . . . a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance”(Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4 NIV).
Life is tough. Would you agree with that? Because of Adam’s sin in the Garden of Eden, the world is broken and nothing works perfectly. Your body doesn’t work perfectly, the weather doesn’t work perfectly, the economy doesn’t work perfectly, no relationship works perfectly. Life is full of losses.
You need to understand a couple of truths that will give you a better perspective as you face the inevitable losses in your life and rise above them.
First, God doesn’t expect you to be happy all the time.
There is this myth that Christians should be always smiling, always happy, always cheerful.
In fact, the Bible says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens . . . a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance” (Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4 NIV).
Sometimes the only appropriate, logical response to life is grief. The Bible says you are to grieve over your losses, including your disappointments, your sin, the suffering in the world, and your friends who are spiritually lost. God doesn’t expect you to be happy all the time. In fact, he wants you to be intentional in your grief.
Second, grief is essential to your health.
If you never grieve over anything, it means one of three things: You’re out of touch with reality, you’re out of touch with your own emotions, or you don’t love. When you love and you see sad things, grief is a natural response.
Grief is a painful emotion, but it’s also a healthy and helpful emotion. And it’s God’s gift. It’s a tool that God gives us to get through the transitions of life.
Maybe you were hurt many years ago growing up. Maybe your parents divorced. Maybe you were abused. Maybe you were hurt by something somebody said about you. As a child, you didn’t know how to grieve in a healthy way, so you just pushed it down deep inside you.
You need to go back and grieve over it. Why? Because if you don’t grieve, you get stuck emotionally, and you spend the rest of your life reacting to something that happened a long time ago and taking it out on the people around you now. It’s unhealthy!
David talked about this in Psalm 32:3: “When I kept things to myself, I felt weak deep inside me. I moaned all day long” (NCV).
The bad things that happen to you are not your choice. But grief is a choice. You may say, “I don’t like feeling sad.” Not everything that’s helpful and healthy feels good. You’ve got to let yourself mourn losses so that you can move on with your life and receive God’s blessing.
For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!
Turn your setback into a comeback!
LAST DAY to double your donation through a $50,000 matching grant!
We live in a fallen world and Scripture assures us that everyone will face problems, trials, difficulties, losses, and failures. But there’s hope for any setback you face!
In his series, How God Turns Setbacks Into Comebacks, Pastor Rick Warren opens God’s Word to show how the Lord helps people overcome their setbacks.
We’d love to help you see a comeback of your own by sending you Pastor Rick’s complete teaching series How God Turns Setbacks Into Comebacks as thanks for your support below.
When you support Daily Hope, you make it possible to reach more people with the hope they can only find in Jesus Christ.
Thank you so much for your gift today!
*The USA IRS code permits you to deduct the amount of your financial gift to Daily Hope that exceeds the fair market value of materials you received from Daily Hope.
This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
You can listen to Rick Warren on OnePlace.com.