Will Smith, Big Toes & The Pursuit of Happiness

In the popular film we journey with actor Will Smith through the many ups and downs of life.  We ride the coaster of emotions that accompany each rise and decent.  Happiness waiting almost teasing, just out of reach.  Life seems to have it’s way with us when it comes to this pursuit that lays at the center of who we are and why we are.  It’s a pursuit that honestly has come to define and motivate many of us, dare we say “ALL” of us.

So with a fair amount of certainty we can say that happiness is a pretty big deal.

Think about it for a minute.  Just today, how much of what you did was motivated by the pursuit of this wonderful ideal.  If I just did this… If I just could have that… If I had a little more… And you know the funniest thing about happiness is it’s fleeting nature.  Here one day and them somehow magically, poof, gone the next!  Ever been there?

Now on to big toes!  Right now I bet your wondering what in the world a big toe has to do with happiness or the lack there of.  Well here goes…

About 2 years ago, there I was minding my own business and then BAM!  Everything came crashing down around me.  Well that may be exaggerating things a bit, but needless to say something dramatic had changed in me.  There all the sudden appeared to be a new disconnect between my toe and my brain.  It came in the shape of a large sledge hammer.  Well you can imagine the scene, in fact I was one of “those” people who posted the “scene” for all to see on Facebook.  Don’t you hate that LOL.  From that day forward I have experienced the effects of this disconnect.  My wife enjoys a new happiness (not the sort we are talking about here) every time I round the corner and she hears a bang and the nice words that follow what she knows has happened. Now don’t get me wrong, she does not take joy in my pain, only in my undeniably strange inability to navigate really any hallway or room without smashing my toe into something. In fact just this morning I once again rammed my toe into something that I knew was there.

Now back to my happiness and by extension yours…

Have you ever been journeying through life, happy as a lark one moment and then BAM, toe jam the next?  It’s amazing to me the rhythm life seems to call itself too, as if we were made to live in this perpetual back and forth, up and down.  Happy, Not Happy, Happy, Not Happy.  Honestly I’m just tired of hitting my stupid toe on things!!  Ever just get tired of the pursuit.  Ever look up and wonder if God is really just having a good time with all of us?

Ok lets get deep.  What if we were never meant to pursue happiness?

Whoa now before you throw your stones, think on that for a bit…

Maybe the reason we keep stubbing our toes is because that is just how life tends to be sometimes!  It’s not a reason to blame God or even wonder if He is there.  What if we were meant to, or no wait, created to pursue something else? Someone else? And what if this someone has promised a new sort of happiness that doesn’t leave every time we decide to bash our toes on something?

Proverbs 16:20b says: Whoever trusts in the LORD, happy is he.

Huh, seems simple, I’ve heard that before, you?  Maybe think about it like this.

Do you find yourself needing something or someone in addition to God to find happiness?

Ouch. That someone or something is called an IDOL.  In the scriptures God often took to grounding them up and making people drink them… thank God he gave up that practice, but what if He still longs for you and me with the same passion and fervency to discover the freedom and happiness that comes from living life without them?  What if you could be free today?  NOt only that think what it would do to the people in our lives who we hold to the unreal expectations of delivering happiness to our souls?  Think how marriages, relationships, churches, jobs, kids and parents would feel if we set them free from being the ones with whom our happiness hinges.  What if we just today, right now decided to try this trust in the Lord thing?  I wonder if we would discover that in the ups and the downs happiness would stop eluding us.

Grace & Peace,

Jon

 

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