To Be Happy, Learn to Collaborate
By Rick Warren
“You must get along with each other. You must learn to be considerate of one another, cultivating a life in common.” 1 Corinthians 1:10 (The Message)
Happiness isn’t a matter of luck; it’s a matter of learning. To live a happier life, you need to learn how to work well with others.
I call this the skill of collaboration. It’s an important skill not often taught in schools, but when learned, it can exponentially increase a person’s happiness.
What do you need to learn in order to work well with other people?
First, learn to cooperate with others. The church in Philippi sent a man named Epaphroditus to help Paul while he was in prison in Rome. Philippians 2:25 says, “I feel that I must send Epaphroditus—my brother, coworker, and fellow soldier—back to you. You sent him as your personal representative to help me in my need” (GW).
By calling Epaphroditus his brother, coworker, and fellow soldier, Paul was using three relational metaphors that represent teamwork. Life together is a family, a fellowship, and a fight. Epaphroditus was a team member. He didn’t shut himself off from the world and become a lone ranger.
As believers, we are in the same fight together against Satan, so we need to cooperate with one other—no matter how different we all are. The best place to learn how to do that is in the church.
Second, learn to be considerate. Paul mentioned Epaphroditus again in Philippians 2:26: “He has been longing to see all of you and is troubled because you heard that he was sick” (GW).
Notice how Paul used two examples of consideration: Paul was considerate of his coworker’s homesickness, and Epaphroditus was considerate about the Philippians’ concern.
When you learn to be considerate of other people’s needs, fears, and doubts, you’ll be a happier person. For instance, if you are considerate of your spouse, you’ll have a happy marriage. But if you’re not thoughtful with your words and actions, you’ll have an unhappy marriage.
“Cultivating a life in common” takes work. Like a garden that requires cultivation to bear fruit, you’ll see how your effort bears the fruit of happiness and strong relationships.
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This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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