Tuesday, January 3, 2012
Pursuit of Happiness
I've been going through my bookshelf trying to make up for the lack of reading that has been done. I have so many books I'd like to read. The one I've been reading recently titled The Christian Atheist by Craig Groeshel struck quite an interest and sparked a few thoughts for a blog.
It is astounding how valued the word "happiness" is in our society. If you search "happy" on Amazon books you will get 32,934 results. You can get lost in the self-help section at a bookstore. Now I bet you already know where I'm going with this. You're gonna say "Yes, yes *eye roll* I know, true happiness is only found in God". Wrong. That's not where I was going...kinda. Truth is, it's not about our happiness.
"While it is true that God wants to bless you and has great plans for you, we venture into extremely dangerous territory when we start to believe that God's ultimate plan for us is our happiness."
In our youth group we've been focusing on the purpose of the church (kinda reflecting on me and Ash's Antioch) and the traditions we've kept over the years. It was odd, discussing traditions we have and realizing the reason why we still have them is either to make people happy or we've just plain lost sight of whats important. Or why some folks will just cease coming to church all together because it didn't make them happier. So what is important? What happens when what made you happy, no longer does?
Polluted theology- "I tried religion, but it didn't make me happy. I went to church and it didn't make my life any better. God didn't help me have a better life, so He either failed me or He's not real. Either way, I'm not interested."
God may not want you to be happy. I'm sure Paul wasnt "happy" in prison, or shipwrecked. I definitely sure he wasn't happy when he was getting beaten up. God has a bigger plan for us than we can see. Our suffering, or our joy, or sorrow all has a purpose. The word we are looking for is "blessed".
Psalm 112:1- "Blessed is the one who fears the Lord, who finds great delight in his commands".
Blessed. Joyful. ...I love those words.
Like I said, its not about our happiness or our comfort-ability this world, but seeking out what God's will for our lives is, not our will. We will never discover lasting happiness in the temporary things of this world because we weren't made for this world. Earth is not heaven.
Proverbs 14:12- "There is a way that seems right to a man, but in the end it leads to death".