In Randy's book Happiness, he writes that “True holiness always manifests itself in authentic happiness.” Is the reverse true? If I’m struggling with happiness, perhaps holiness is lacking in my life?
That is certainly a possibility—and for sure, we all have sin in our lives that causes us unhappiness. The good news is, if we’ve embraced Him as our Savior, Jesus has paid for our sins, and as we walk with Him, He will point specific areas out to us that need change. His Holy Spirit is working to sanctify us and make us into the image of Jesus. I really appreciate this article from Ray Ortlund about how the conviction of the Holy Spirit differs from the accusations of Satan. Perhaps read it over and ask the Lord to show you if there any specific areas where you need to confess and repent so you can find greater happiness in Him.
But there are other reasons why you might be struggling to find joy in the Lord. Sometimes it’s hard to find the right perspective when we or someone we love is suffering. Even the everyday struggles of life can sap our happiness. The best thing we can do is seek the Lord through prayer and read and meditate on His Word. We can ask Him to restore to us the joy of our salvation (Psalm 51:12).
Finally, here’s some advice from Joni Eareckson Tada, a godly woman who has known much suffering. And Randy shares more in this article about embracing happiness, even in suffering and loss.
I think you can be encouraged that you can come directly to the Lord with this and trust that He will show you the next step and what might need to change in your actions or thinking or perspective. In His presence is fullness of joy, so that’s the best place we can be!
Stephanie Anderson is the communications and graphics specialist at Eternal Perspective Ministries.