Happiness vs. Joy

Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

So over the past two years I was searching for this THING. This thing I thought was happiness. I DEMANDED it, told everyone I met and knew all I wanted was it and in fact was on my knees each night begging God for it. It's almost comical that this week my professor has asked me to write a paper concerning happiness and what complete happiness is and just Sunday I sat next to my husband listening to the difference between what I SAID I wanted...Happiness and what it was I've truly been desiring which is JOY.

So the question is ...just what is the difference? Is there a difference between happiness and joy? They are both positive and desirable feelings, and it could be said, who cares? If you're feeling good, you're feeling good. Right? In my opinion...so very wrong.

There is a subtle but important distinction between the two, however, which can lead to a person being able to consciously make herself feel better. Happiness is observing or doing something you really like.

Joy is connecting with the source of life within you. Happiness is fleeting. Joy IS continuous. Happiness is dependent upon something or someone outside of yourself. Joy is self-enabling and comes from within. Happiness requires effort, joy is effortless. There's nothing inherent doing that CAUSES you to feel good. You feel good because you stop resisting. If you could do that in your daily life, there would be no need to go on vacation or GET AWAY. Most of us cannot afford to go on vacation the year round, or buy every little thing that strikes our fancy. But there is one thing you can do to feel better, even if your experiences don’t remotely resemble the life you want.

I had to practice feeling good. Seems weird to say it, but it's true. Most of us practice just the opposite every day. We worry about finances, jobs, health, and relationships The list is a long one. Why we do this, I don't know. I think its just a bad habit. But bad habits can be turned into good habits! I'm not saying I've mastered it by any means, but I'm learning and I'm getting better at it everyday.

This applies to everything in life. If you want to meet a lot of happy people, find excuses to be happy yourself. The more you resonate to happiness, the more happiness comes to you. Happiness comes from the outside, joy from within.

When you feel good, you feel God. Joy is a continuous state of happiness, a continuing state of positive emotion.

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