I have just returned from a Beth Moore Bible study session where I was thrilled with a reminder. Just as the world is always looking for a quick fix for happiness, the church has in recent times tried to stress that Christians have the “joy” of the Lord to help in all kinds of circumstances even if we are not feeling “happy” at the moment. We are not to live or die by our feelings alone or think that if we are not happy, God must not be working in our lives. The “joy” of Him is to be our strength in every circumstance (Nehemiah 8:10). However, there are times when God supplies “sheer happiness”, the “dancing up and down, twirling all around” kind of happiness. And we are to celebrate life with this emotion also. This happiness is found several places in God’s word to us, but just to name a couple are: Psalm 32:1-11 ( forgiveness and cleansing from the guilt of our sins in confession and repentance toward Him); and Matthew 5:3-12 (rewards for living out a life for Jesus in all kinds of circumstances). The translation for “blessed” in these places is a word for sheer happiness – cheering and rejoicing happiness. When I was reminded of this, I felt like dancing with excitement. God wants us to experience that kind of exuberance. We don’t have to live without it. Just be sure to follow Jesus’ ways; don’t look for a “happy” that doesn’t include Him.