This last weekend Stephan talked about there being more to life than being happy. It probably made you think, “Like what?” Let’s explore that topic a little bit further.
I have heard tons of people tell me that they knew that God ultimately only wanted for them to be happy. To them, I always respond, “Actually, that isn’t really logical.” You cannot believe that an all powerful God really wants for everyone to be happy. If he willed it, then the Muslims would eliminate the Jews. The Jews would displace the people living in modern-day Palestine. Detroit Lions fans would celebrate a Super Bowl victory, as would Green Bay, New England and the rest of the 32 cities that have teams in the NFL.
It would mean that two guys in love with the same girl would both be married to her and live happily ever after. If you start to make a list of the things that make us happy, you would realize that we could not possibly have it all. Workouts wouldn’t be necessary because no one would be fat. No one would die because that makes us unhappy. We would live in a perpetual state of getting everything we wanted all the time. Our lives would become meaningless.
More importantly than the pure logic, which would dispel the thought that God just wants to make us happy, there is an incredible spiritual truth that dictates that God is less concerned with our happiness than we think. God does not exist for our pleasure. Most people have God confused with either a genie or a doting grandmother. Neither are true.
and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images of mortal man and birds and animals and reptiles. 24Therefore God gave them up in the desires of their hearts to impurity for the dishonoring of their bodies with one another. 25They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator, who is forever worthy of praise! Amen.
This passage states that people would serve what they wanted more than serving God. It actually describes pursuing happiness above everything else is actually a punishment from God. More than this. The Bible says that as we chase our own happiness at the expense of glory to God, death is the result.
but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed. 15Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
Most people believe that what they want, what makes them happy is getting what they want. They do not take into consideration that people are evil by nature. What I want, many times would be painful and sometimes even tragic for someone else. That is not what God wants. There must be something far bigger.
There is just one more thought about happiness that is critical.
Happiness is an effect. It is a terrible end. What I mean is this. Happiness is something that we experience because of things working well. We know that this life is not designed to always work out. Happiness comes on as a surprise, but when we expect it or even live for it as our goal, we become entitled to happiness. The end result is that we are disappointed with most of what life hands us. I am sure that you have heard some one complain about the Christmas gifts they received, or talking negatively about a date they had. That is because they felt entitled to happiness. It is a better life when we are surprised by happiness.
We would be better served discussing what God actually does want for us. I consider that God has already told us what he wants for us. It is that we find our fulfillment in our relationship with him. That makes sense in that God is permanent and unchanging. Fulfillment is also a more important experience than happiness. It lasts.
Hey. Consider these things when you are thinking that life is not making you happy enough.