You Don’t Have to Be Happy

You don't have to be happyLet’s be honest. There’s pressure to put the happy in our holiday.

And if gift-giving, family gatherings, and expectations weren’t enough, we’re told to do it all with a bit of cheer.

But what if you don’t feel merry or thankful? And your season isn’t bright?

Everywhere we look, we’re told that happiness is the key to success, health, longevity, mental strength and relationships. But I wonder; is our “don’t worry, be happy” mantra really working?

If there’s one message you won’t hear from Hallmark or see in your Facebook feed, it’s this:

You do not have to be happy. Happiness is not a requirement for a good (or godly) life. Continue reading

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Finding Hope When You Feel Hopeless

This couldn’t be happening. Not again. Not ever.

My heart beat wildly as I pressed a firm hand to my chest. Like lapsing waves, one hardship rose after the other, sweeping me into a sea of despair.

Anxiety. Depression. Disease. Inability to conceive. Now this.

Panic threatened to overwhelm as inflammation increased and my knee swelled for the third time. After four years of ceaseless prayers, all my hope for the future was shattered.

Again.

I thought I was getting better. But I was still broken. Continue reading

A Living Hope: I am secure

Life is unpredictable. In the span of three decades, I’ve already lost more than I care to lose: family, friends, a job, dreams and health.

When you’ve experienced recurring loss and grief, it can create a cycle of anxiety and fear over what else you could lose.

Salvation, for one.

Many times I have been gripped by the panic that I could lose my relationship with God. Or that Jesus will forget me when death darkens my door. Could I do something to jeopardize my eternity? Will my faith be enough?

Continue reading

A Living Hope: I am forgiven

I know Jesus has forgiven me. But too often I live like this forgiveness isn’t full or free. I allow my past to define me. When I fail, I fear God will be mad at me. And though I don’t admit it, I’m still trying to prove my worth so that God will accept and approve of me. Continue reading