God just wants me to be happy

Does He?  Maybe. Lets consider what would make a person happy. Often when this phrase is used, someone is trying to justify a purchase that they cant afford. Lets suppose the purchase is made. How long does that happiness last? Likely not very long and the payments will certainly outlast this brief materialistic joy. Stuff might be fun, but there is no happiness there.

Consider Jesus’ conversation with a rich young ruler in Matthew 19:16-23:

16 And behold, a man came up to him, saying, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life?” 17 And he said to him, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only one who is good. If you would enter life, keep the commandments.” 18 He said to him, “Which ones?” And Jesus said, “You shall not murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, 19 Honor your father and mother, and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 20 The young man said to him, “All these I have kept. What do I still lack?” 21 Jesus said to him, “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” 22 When the young man heard this he went away sad, for he had great possessions.

23 And Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly, I say to you, only with difficulty will a rich person enter the kingdom of heaven.

That young man was all in for Jesus. Almost. That “stuff” that once made him happy now made him sad. The purchase that you may make will certainly enslave you for a while and you may end up hating the item for the sacrifice it requires. Ask anyone with a boat or a house that’s too large. More doesn’t equal happiness.

Other times the person uttering this phrase is contemplating leaving a spouse for yet another “soulmate.” Again, a clear violation of Gods law, but we try to give God credit for it by playing the happiness card. Then the guilt is on God, not you, so you get to feel justified in major sin. That way when the casualties of divorce are added up, the blame goes elsewhere.  Intentional sin has NEVER made anyone happy. EVER! The idea of a soulmate who you can only connect with by sinning isn’t even a good plot for a romantic comedy anymore. If you’re sure that all God wants is for you to be happy, why did he let you marry your non-soulmate? What if you find more soulmates? Which one is “meant to be?”

Consider what Proverbs 3:13 says,

Happy is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding! For her profit is better than profit in silver, and better than gold is her revenue; She is more precious than corals, and none of your choice possessions can compare with her.

In Gods plan, happiness is the result of obedience. If you do not obey, you wont be happy. Gods character is shown in the love he has for us. He wants better for us than stuff and a trail of broken hearts. Christians are forgiven, but its tough to look back at the mess we’ve made trying to be happy and have failed miserably. Selfish pursuits, even successful ones, are so small compared to what we could have had by following Jesus. He offers true joy, not in crap you have to store or the latest cure to your emotional woes. His joy fills you to a depth you’ve never known before. If you put you’re happiness before your passion for Jesus, you’ll likely never be happy. That my friends is a sad choice

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