Jesus wants you to be happy.

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Jesus wants you to be happy, so he tells you how.
Are you happy?
That is a different question to ‘is life easy?’  Life is full of challenges and difficulties – you can allow them to defeat, define or develop you.  But ‘is life easy’ is a different question to ‘are you happy?’  According to the World Database of Happiness, happiness is defined as ‘the intensity of a sense of meaning, purpose, legacy and contentment.’  It is measured through the question: ‘Taking all together, how satisfied or dissatisfied are you with your life as a whole these days?’
Are you happy?
Martin Seligman, the academic father of positive psychology and its popular sister positive thinking, describes three escalating kinds of ‘happiness’
1.    A pleasant life, in which you fill your life with as many pleasures as possible.
2.   An engaged life, where you find a life in your work, parenting, love or leisure.
3.   A meaningful life, which ‘consists of knowing what your highest strengths are, and using them to belong to and in the service of something larger than you are.’
Are you happy?
Not a temporary feeling of pleasure but an ‘intense sense of meaning, purpose, legacy and contentment.’?  The ‘meaningful life’ in Seligiman’s trio.
Blessed
The New Bible Dictionary defines blessed as ‘a bestowal of good, meaning, purpose and contentment usually associated with a sense of legacy.’  It is the Bible’s word for the kind of happiness being talked about here.
Jesus tells us how to be happy
Jesus says in John 13:17 ‘Now you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.’  There is a Jesus defined route to happiness – things to ‘know’ and ‘do’ which will mean we are blessed.  We are happy.  What are they?
Have you been served by Jesus?
‘You call me “Teacher” and “Lord”, and rightly so, for that is what I am.  Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet…’  (John 13:13-14)
Have you allowed Jesus to serve you and wash you clean?  It’s a reference to his death.  You need to know him as cleansing saviour.  You need to trust him.  If you know and do you will be blessed.
Are you serving others like Jesus?
‘Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.’ (John 13:14-15)
You need to know Jesus as servant and imitate him.  If you know and do you will be blessed.  It is radically counter-cultural.  Happiness is found by serving others and not self-serving.
Paul got it:
‘In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death – even death on a cross!’  (Philippians 2:5-7)
It is taking our strengths and status and wealth and energy and skills and using them to serve others.  Like Jesus has served us with his wealth and status and power and life.
Go low to be happy.  Serve others as you have been served.  It will make you marriage and your parenting and your workplace and your sports’ club and your church happy.
‘For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.’  (Mark 10:45)
Why do you not serve?
Who do you need to serve?
How could you serve?

Are you happy?

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