The Happy File
Luann Prater

“Be joyful always.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16 (NIV)

It wasn’t what some would call a perfect day, but to her it was special. We had spent the day together just hanging out around the house. Simple things like lunch on the deck, soaking in the sunshine, and giggling over funny memories traced the outlines of our shared moments. That’s when she whispered a few words as if she were telling herself a secret, “This day is going in my Happy File.”

She explained that her Happy File was a record kept of God’s simple blessings, those moments in time that beam with a little extra spark. You know the ones. When no one else would get it, but whenever you recall it… you smile. Her collection was spilling over the top.

Often we choose to hang onto the bad memories. We relive the abuse. We replay piercing words. We carry the guilt and hold on to the shame. We forget the promise of Romans 8:1, “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” (NIV). No condemnation. Period, nada, zip, none!

She found the Happy File very helpful when darkness came creeping into her life. Satan loves to fill our minds with negative thoughts and trip us up with stumbling blocks. A stash of happiness works like a flashlight in the middle of the night. The evil one can cloud our world with gloom, but when we open the file that holds God’s blessings, the shadows are shattered.

So what are you choosing to keep on file? Here is the deal. Start a collection of Happy Files! God’s fingerprints are all over each day. Look for them! Record them! Recall them!

Next, pull out those old musty files that have collected guilty dust and shameful mildew. One by one as they come to your mind plunge them into God’s thought-shredder. Second Corinthians 10:5 instructs, “Take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ” (NIV). When you say this verse out loud, something amazing happens! The thoughts go away! God longs to give you freedom from guilt, shame, worry, and anything else that hinders your ability to be joyful.

When you accept Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you can begin daily to rid your mind of the garbage Satan has dumped on you and replace it with Happy Files. Then you truly can BE JOYFUL ALWAYS.

Dear Father, thank You for forgiving us for every sin we have ever committed and promising never to condemn us for them! Help us each day to choose to live in the freedom of that promise and to be joyful always. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Submit a prayer request

31 Days of Praise by Ruth Myers

Traveling Light: Releasing the Burdens You Were Never Intended to Bear by Max Lucado

Application Steps:
Get a package of index cards that are spiral bound. Begin to record “God moments” on them. Keep this Happy File where you can easily grab it in case of unexpected darkness.

What gloom am I allowing to hang over me?

How can I walk in the light of God’s promise every day?

Why am I resistant to let go of the past?

Power Verses:
Psalm 68:3, “But may the righteous be glad and rejoice before God; may they be happy and joyful.” (NIV)

Isaiah 55:12, “You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace.” (NIV)

Psalm 40:1, “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry.” (NIV)

Romans 4:20-21, “Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised.” (NIV)

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Blogger Hannah said...

That's beautiful!

Thank you!

Blogger margaret said...

love you my sister in Christ, thank you for letting me know about this wonderful site as we can learn much from it. margaret

Anonymous Anonymous said...

thanks for reminding me that God is bigger than what i can see.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this site - I get to work early every day so I can read it. As a new Christian, I appreciate the insights. It keeps me wanting more of Christ

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Luann - You did an excellent job of speaking right to my heart today. Your words were powerful and so evident of the presence of The Holy Spirit. THANK YOU for blessing my day and weekend.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

At this moment, this second in my life I so needed to hear this word. Thank you so much for the love and encouragement in your devotionals. The Lord is truly working through Proverbs 31. Linda

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