Right Thinking…Wrong Thinking…God Wants Me to be Happy

Our western culture screams it from every ad, every movie, TV show.

We talk about it as if it were sage advice handed down from before time began.

As parents we often say we just want it for our kids.

What is the elusive it that we are building our lives around? Happiness.

That fickle feeling that seems to dangle in front of us. I will finally be happy when….

I just want to be happy so why can’t my parents be happy for me?

Do we really want to base our lives on something that a simple piece of chocolate can create or that Coca-cola claims to have bottled?

Is happiness all there is?

Wrong thinking: God wants me to be happy.

Heart Issue: What is wrong with me or God if I am not happy. God would not want me in any situation that makes me “unhappy.” So if I am not happy I have the right to leave said situation. I deserve to be happy. It is my God given right. If sin makes me happy I find an exception to God’s rule and sin anyway.

Actions: Doubt and question God when difficult circumstances surround you. You are willing to walk away from relationships that do not make you happy. You chase happiness like a dog chases his tail. You believe the next thing will make you happy. If only you had a…baby, new car, new husband, younger wife, better friend, better looking girlfriend, better job, nicer house…then you would be happy. Since God wants you to be happy you are willing to sin because happiness is more important than holiness.

Right thinking: God wants me to be holy. “Be holy because I, the LORD your God, am holy.” Lev. 19:2b

Heart Issue: You find joy and satisfaction in God not the things of this world. You are willing to remain in difficult situations and pray for wisdom and reconciliation. You are willing to do the hard work that reconciliation takes regardless of who is at most fault. You seek to be more like God and desire what He has not what would make you most happy. You honor others above yourself. You are content. ***You also discover lasting joy that happiness can never fulfill.

Actions: When times are difficult you cling to God. You may question, but you cling to Him. You are unwilling to allow the allure of happiness deter you from doing what is right. You seek to do things God’s way and not your own. You believe that God has your best in mind in all things. You say with John the Baptist, “He must become greater; I must become less.” (John 3:30)

What do you think about happiness and holiness? Join in! Remember tomorrow you will have a chance to link up your own post about Wrestling with God.

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Angela
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6 Responses to Right Thinking…Wrong Thinking…God Wants Me to be Happy

  1. Anonymous says:

    Yeah, I wrestle with the fact that God does not necessarily want me to be happy all the time.  I have to persevere through trials and tribulations to become mature and complete.  It’s easier to accept with hindsight, but not so easy to accept when you’re in the process of clinging to Him.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes and in the process of becoming holy He can and will give us joy. Joy is better than happiness anyway. Thanks for sharing Daniel.

  2. Amy Rouse says:

    Very good points. I think our culture (American Christianity) views following Christ in a very, very different way than our brothers and sisters in most other non-Western countries. Joy and happiness are not synonomous and one is much more excellent than the other. Thank you for sharing this!

    • Anonymous says:

      Amy – You are so right. Western Culture is so different and so is Western Christianity. I am praying we can find our joy in Him not our circumstances. Thanks for joining in.

  3. martha brady says:

    angela, i love this truth. it has taken me a long time to embrace it. the first time i heard it, i bristled. but it is so true. when i hear new parents say that the thing they want for their children is for them to be happy, i cringe!

    i hope wisdom will take over b/f their children grow up much b/c their home will be an unhappy place indeed. it is impossible for children to be happy all the time…and grow into responsible adults. it will not happen. they don’t know enough about the real world and its dangers and realities.

    thanks for putting it so well…and reminding us the our only true joy is in following and being obedient to Christ.

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