True happiness not measured in dollars, cents

Published 10:15 am Tuesday, June 30, 2009

What an eventful week this has been. This was my thought as I was awakened by the storms on Friday morning around 4 a.m., the 26th day of June.

I began to look back at all of the things that have happened in the place we call our world. Of course the usual things have happened as well with bad decisions that politicians have made in their personal lives.

But this week has been filled with more than that. The leaders of nations are saying things that they once would have never said — from Iran’s dictator who has told America to stay out of their lives to N. Korea telling us that we are in big trouble with them!

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What a week of events has come our way! It is a good thing that I know that it is supposed to be this way as we approach the “greatest event” ever in our lifetimes.

As Christians, we are aware of the taking away of the church mentioned in 1Thesssalonians 4:16-17. It is truly closer than it has ever been. I do not know when but I truly believe it will happen.

Then I continued on this early morning thinking about other events that have happened.

The death of Johnny Carson’s former right hand man, whom in my life time I heard say the words, “Here’s Johnny” many times.

Then was the passing of Farrah Fawcett, who I watched in early episodes of the original “Charlie’s Angels.”

Then news broke that Michael Jackson was in cardiac arrest and then died.

And, yes, I remember the Michael Jackson that came out and began to sing a song that many other kids would try to sing, “ABC 123.” And I myself tried to “moon walk” a time or two only to decide it was not for me.

As I look at these three individuals I am reminded that wealth and stardom does not mean that you are going to be happy as life comes to an end.

Many folks including myself have made statements such as, “I wish had their money,” not necessarily these three individuals but another that we have seen whom has had a great deal of wealth.

Dreams and desires are not bad but they can look a lot better from a distance than they do up close.

If you take a look at the three that I have mentioned you will find a certain note of unhappiness in all of their lives. Broken homes. Broken relationships. Broke financially.

Yes, they may have offered some things of greatness and good deeds but it seems that the paths of brokenness walked right through the lives of these that have had all of the things that many of us believe that could make us happy.

Though the truth of the matter is “ anything that you can hold in your hand is only temporary and it will eventually fade away.”

Scripture records in James 4:14 that our life is just a vapor, it appears than it is gone.

It would help us all to realize that true happiness cannot be found in wealth or stardom. True happiness can only come from the giver of life.

Many folks say that they believe in God. Media reports and the family makes statements that they are gone above and looking down on us all.

Folks, do not be misled. Anyone can believe in God and do good works but one must truly be “born again” according to John 3:3.

If not, unhappiness will continue even after this life is finished. For one to truly be “born again” a change must take place in the life of the person and they will have a different perspective of sin.

With all of the events of this past week — the political scandals, the threats from other dictators, and then the vision of lives ending in brokenness — one must make sure that they are ready for things that are to come.

I guess storms come in all different forms just as the one that awakened me early that morning. It is my hope that others will be awakened as well.

Pastor Bryan Chaffins

Pleasant Street Church