Everyone wants to be happy, but few people are.
Today most people appear so unhappy, including Christians. It’s no wonder the world wants no part of what we have! Too many of us are setting our hearts on things other than God for our happiness. For instance, many of us look to possessions and money to make us happy (Mark 4:19). The Bible says, “If riches increase, set not your heart on them.” (Ps. 62:10) Others look to power, popularity, or fame for happiness, but all (including riches) only give momentary pleasure, not true happiness. Some try to put all their hopes for happiness in people: relationships, spouses, children, friends; however, people will always let us down because they are human and sinners just like us.
So, is there hope for true happiness? The thought inspired me to look up all the times the bible uses the word “happy.”
Happy is the man:
- Whom the Lord correcteth. Job. 5:17
- Who’s is full – a house full of children. Ps. 127:5
- Who fears the Lord and walks in his ways. Ps. 128:2
- Who’s God is the Lord. Ps. 144:15
- That finds wisdom. Prov. 3:13
- That retains wisdom. Prov. 3:18
- That has mercy on the poor. Prov. 14:21
- That feareth (the Lord) always. Prov. 28:14
- That is saved and washes other’s feet – a servant. John 13:17
- That endures – has patience like Job. James 5:11
- That suffers for righteousness sake. 1 Pet. 3:14
- That is reproached for the name of Christ. (for the spirit and glory of God rests upon you – and God was glorified.) I Pet. 4:14
- That is single. I Cor. 7:40
- That keeps the law. Prov. 29:18
- Who has God’s help and who’s hope is in the Lord. Ps. 146:5
All through Psalms the bible also refers to “being glad” in the Lord and the Lord making us “glad.” God is the key to our happiness, without Him happiness is continually elusive. Looking at the list above I find it ironic that the world’s understanding of happiness is totally opposite of God’s formula. The world’s backward view would tell us that:
- God loves us and would never correct or punish us.
- Children are a burden and you are crazy if you have more than two.
- Choose your own way in life.
- We don’t need God. We can be our own god and no one has the right to hurt our feelings and tell us that we
- Being wise is the same as being smart.
- If we study hard enough we will know everything.
- You can have it all and should have it all, others don’t matter as much as my happiness.
- God is our buddy whom we can bring down to our level.
- You should look out for yourself before all others and you have the right to trample whoever it takes in the process to get to the top.
- If it is hard, just quit.
- Suffering is punishment.
- Everyone should love you and make you feel good about yourself. Self Esteem is very important.
- If you don’t have “someone” then your worthless and something is wrong with you.
- The Bible is outdated and impossible to follow.
- Being a Christian and believing in God is stupid.
Until we focus on God, we will continue to be just like the world chasing things that only bring temporary pleasure.
The world understands the difference between their type of temporary happiness and true happiness. When they see true happiness in us, they can’t help but be drawn to it. We have the key to true happiness right at our fingertips, but many of us in our quest for happiness are like the seed in Jesus’s parable in Mathew 13:22. We hear God’s word but allow “the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches” to “choke the word”… aka we focus on ourselves instead of God’s voice and will. This makes us become like the seed and be “unfruitful.” Why? Because no one wants what we have; they already have it.
I find this so sad. Our goal in life shouldn’t be happiness, it should be following Christ and His word. When we do, then by default we will be happy. Some call it peace, some call it joy, some call it happiness…whatever you call it, it is the key for drawing the world into wanting a relationship with Christ.