The Reality of Inaccurate “feel good quotes” …

crop person hand in broken mirror

Photo by Bruno Pires 

Sometimes as I scroll my Facebook and Instagram I see what seems to be a fabulous and profound quote…but then…but wait…I saw one that said, “rise above the storm and you will find the sunshine.” Another one I saw said, “Nothing is worth it if you aren’t happy.”  Well, while this might sound like accurate loquaciousness in the emotional sense, it is not accurate in the journey of life, at least not in my experience of 64 years on the planet. A storm is defined in the dictionary this way, “a violent disturbance of the atmosphere with strong winds and usually rain, thunder, lightning, or snow OR a tumultuous reaction; an uproar or controversy.”

And happiness has nothing to do with some situation or someone’s worth…there are limitless relationships, and situations that are totally worth it and totally hard!

The Truth is that you are born into a storm, into a world of tumultuous reaction, uproar, and controversy. It is called a “Fallen World of Sin and therefore broken.” I see no way that a human being can “rise” above any storm on their own.    See Romans 6:23.

Some might see my outlook as discouraging which is not my goal. However, if you believe God’s Word and you read and understand what occurred in Genesis chapter 3 then you will also understand that if you read the whole Bible there is good news and a solution to “THE STORM”…and He, Jesus, is the provider of Joy.

That is because happiness is an emotion in which we “experience feelings ranging from contentment and satisfaction to bliss and intense pleasure,” whereas joy “is a stronger, less common feeling than happiness.”  (Dr, Hud McWilliams). We experience joy when we achieve selflessness to the point of personal sacrifice.”

In the storm of an abusive childhood, or a miscarriage, a broken marriage, a health battle, an addiction, a mental illness, financial destitution, a death of your most beloved, and on the list goes…there is not a way around this storm! This storm touches everything and everyone from sunrise to sunset…There is no place in scripture where it says that we, in and of ourselves, will rise above anything. “Jesus said, without me, you can do nothing.” John 15:5

Many places in scripture we are promised, by God, that he will go with us through the storm, the suffering, and His Spirit will not leave nor forsake us. It does not tell us that we will be relieved from the lonely unlit path of the storm or that we will not get hurt by the storm. Again, the promise is that God will be with us through the pain.

In a time when Bible illiteracy in and outside of the Church is evident, I believe words of encouragement need to be accurate more than ever.

2 Corinthians 1:3 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

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