What is the secret of gladness?
Gladness: feeling joy or pleasure; delighted; pleased; characterized by or showing cheerfulness, joy, or pleasure, as looks or utterances.
What is the secret of gladness?
There are many things which help to make people glad. This is a beautiful world in which we live. When the work of creation was finished, God surveyed it and saw that it was very good. We do not think enough of what God has done for our pleasure in the way he has adorned this world, preparing it to be our home. He has spread loveliness everywhere. He has covered the fields with a luxuriance of vegetation. He has sown the earth with flowers. The wonderful variety in nature — mountain and valley, lake, river, and stream — gives an added charm to the marvelous beauty. Then over all this splendor God has thrown a vast vaulted roof of blue, in which, when night comes, instead of black darkness, thousands of star-lamps are hung to pour their soft, quiet radiance over us while we sleep. "Secret of gladness" by J. R. Miller 1899
We spend so much time complaining about all sorts of things we forget to be glad about what we have and what is around us — we are experts at complaining about the weather (too hot, too cold, too windy), we like to complain about our busy lives (which we inflict upon our selves), we complain about all the chores we still have to do, we complain about the jobs we have and on and on it goes. We need to stop complaining and start being glad as we have so many reasons to be glad.
If we would find the Christian's secret of gladness, we must not to live in the shadows, amid doubts and discouragements; and must persist in living ever in the brightness and beauty of God's love.
Another place to find gladness is in our homes which is why creating a restful for "tired hearts" is so important. I just love how Miller describes a happy home.
Another helper of gladness is a happy home. It need not be a home of wealth and luxury; it may be plain, without wealth, with but little adornment — yet filled with love. There hearts trust each other. Men who are out in the world all day must be continually on their guard, not knowing whom they may trust; when they come home at nightfall they may lay aside their reserve, for they are with those now who love them. Home is a resting-place for tired hearts. Many of us would never be able day after day to face life, with its struggles, its battles, its duties — were it not for the renewal of strength which we get in our home.
Many are the joys of a true home. True wedded life gives sweet happiness. Husband and wife live for each other, and learn to practice all of love's sweet lessons — thoughtfulness, patience, helpfulness, kindness. Children bring new happiness; the meaning of the home-life deepens as they come. They add to the care — but in the care, rich blessing is folded up. Love's burdens are light — they are gifts of God. They are to the soul — what wings are to the bird. A true home is a little fragment of Heaven, not with Heaven's perfect purity and perfect happiness — but having in it something of Heaven's love, a prophecy at least of the full life of love in the Father's house beyond the shadows of earth.
What scenes on earth are more beautiful than those which are witnessed in a consistent Christian home — the family gathered at the table, or sitting about the evening lamp with reading and music and conversation, or bowing in prayer at the family altar! It is easy to be good and true, with a holy home-life to inspire in us the things that are beautiful and worthy.
As J. R. Miller states, being glad does not come naturally to many and we need to learn to be glad, even in times of sorrow and heart-ache. Someone asked the following question on Facebook the other day "What is the biggest problem you are having in your life that you need a solution to?". It got me thinking, I really don't have anything to complain about and feel quite content in what God has provided. It would be nice to have more time to quilt, blog and reading - but to be honest - I am sure I would waste the extra time it I was given it!!! This doesn't mean I don't have problems, its just they are outweighed by all the blessings in my life. Gladness is a wonderful and peaceful place to be.
Let the world see our glad hearts and far less of our grumbles.
We can serve the world in no other way so well, as by being glad Christians. Then light will shine from us wherever we go, and we will be true revealers of God. Then men will want our Savior for theirs, a Savior who can turn their grief to gladness, who can make them victorious over life's sorrows.
Yet, after all, our dream of perfect gladness will never be fully realized in this world. There will always be something lacking. At best, earth's best is still incomplete. We may learn to sing our songs of triumph in the thickest of life's struggles, in the deepest of sorrow's midnights, and to be inspirers of others through our victorious gladness; yet ever on before us will move the vision of perfect joy, leading us and cheering us forward by its sweet hope, yet still unreached, still calling us to something better. It will not be until we close our eyes in death — that we shall attain the fullness of joy in Heavenly glory!
"In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore!" Psalm 16:11