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Habits that Lead to Happiness: Pt. 7

How to Develop Daily Habits for Happiness 

If you would like to extend this over a week, you can easily do one of the points each day in your devotion.  For a printable version of this, click here.
Philippians 3:12-13 "I don't mean to say I am perfect.  I still haven't learned all I should, but I keep working toward that day when I will finally be all that Christ saved me for and wants me to be.  No, dear brothers, I am still not all I should be..." (TLB)
Happiness is not illusive, unattainable, or dependent on our circumstances.  Once we accept that happiness does not come from what we do but from what God has dine for us, we can mature in our faith and develop healthy habits for happiness.  

Paul, through his humility exemplified in Philippians 3:12-13 above, encourages our daily working toward what Christ wants us to be.  Once we understand, we can practice making the choice to be happy.  Five healthy habits for happiness include.

  1. Live in God's grace!
  2. Remember what matters!
  3. Get to know Jesus better!
  4. Review where I need to grow!
  5. Forget what can't be changed and focus on the future!

As we discipline our mind through worship and prayer daily around these five habits, we are truly choosing happiness.
Open up in prayer.  Ask God to open your heart and remove the distractions in your mind now.
Philippians 3:3 "We Christians glory in what Christ has done for us and realize that we are helpless to save ourselves." (TLB)
1. What part do we play and what part does Christ play in our salvation according to Philippians 3:3 above?

Philippians 3:6 "I was so zealous that I harshly persecuted the church.  And as for righteousness, I obeyed the law without fault." (NLT)

Philippians 3:9 "But I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God's law.  Instead I trust Christ to save me!  For God's way of making us right with himself is through faith!" (NLT)
2. Speaking of himself in Philippians 3:6, the Apostle Paul writes, "I obeyed the law without fault." In verse 9 Paul shares how his mind and heart change.  Have you fully trusted Christ for your salvation?"

Philippians 3:8 "Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Jesus Christ my Lord.  I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with him." (NLT) 
3. Paul reminds us that we need to constantly focus on eternity to become one with Christ, and that everything else is "garbage."  To put this into perspective, we need to answer the following question:

How important will the current major issues in our lives be in 5 or 10 years, or into eternity?  What strategies might you use daily to focus on eternity and not be distracted by the popular culture of today's world? 
4. We are encouraged to live in God's grave every day.

Philippians 3:3 "For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh -

Philippians 3:3 ..."We couldn't carry this off by our own efforts, and we know it!" (MSG)
 

  • One of the traps that prevent us from living in God's grace is LEGALISM

Legalism is the attitude that I have to prove my love to God.
Legalism is trusting in what I do for God instead of what Jesus did for me.


Can you think of times in your life where you have tried to prove your love to God for trusting in your own works?

Philippians 3:2 "Watch out for those dogs, those men who do evil, those mutilators of the flesh.  For it is we who are the circumcision, we who worship by the Spirit of God, who glory in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh - through I myself have reasons for such confidence.  If anyone else thinks he has reasons to put confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for legalistic righteousness, faultless. 
Rituals - Race - Religion - Rules - Reputation
Philippians 3:6 "...for legalistic righteousness, I was faultless."

Philippians 3:9 "But I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God's law.  Instead I trust Christ to save me!  For God's way of making us right with himself is through faith!" (NLT)
5. We are encouraged to remember what matters!

Philippians 3:7 "All the things that I once thought were so important to me, I now consider worth nothing, because of Christ."

Can you think of activities that you were involved in or things that you are attached to that no longer matters?

How does the popular culture trap us into staying focused on things that don't matter?


1 John 2:16 "For everything in the world - the craving of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does - comes not from the Father but from the world.

Philippians 3:8 "Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.  I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with him. (NLT)
We are encouraged to get to know Jesus better every day! 

Philippians 3:10 I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, and so, somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead.

Philippians 3:10 "For my determined purpose is that I may know Christ - that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more strongly and more clearly..." (AMP)


What would you say is the number one trap that keeps you from knowing Christ better?

Talking to many people, including looking into my own life, I find that busyness seems to get us off the schedule of that daily discipline growing our faith.

Psalm 46:10 "Be still, and know that I am God."

Can you think of how you might be able to carve our time to be obedient to Psalm 46:10?

Philippians 3:10 "For my determined purpose is that I may know Christ - that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more strongly and more clearly." (AMP)