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Are you happy?

January 26, 2016

Grace to you! Our little daughter is close to 6 months old. My wife often sings to her, “If you’re happy and you know it, say ‘Praise the Lord!’” It’s our modified version of the “If you’re happy and you know it” song. We hope to instill in our daughter a view that loving Jesus and finding happiness in life are the same pursuits. Too often we as adults believe that serving Jesus and our endless pursuit of happiness are on different paths. We understand we are commanded to obey God. And we often see the commands of God more like a drill sergeant barking orders to his new soldiers. We obey because the chain of command his higher than we are. So we dutifully follow God’s orders with as much ‘joy’ as a berated soldier in boot camp. But is this the biblical picture of knowing God? Is this how Jesus spoke about His own relationship with His Father? And how should we think about our unending search for happiness in the midst of all this?

If there is one thing all people whether atheists, Christians, or secularists believe the same about is that we all are seeking happiness. It’s hardwired into us to desire happiness. We long for a utopia. No sickness, no heartache, no more broken relationships. Poverty and death are wiped away. No more false offers by dictator-like leaders who promise to make the world a better place but always fail and make things worse. Our yearning for something bigger and better is seen in our flurry of moving on to the next activity or gadget or party. Searching, searching, searching, but never finding the restful happiness we so crave. It’s our desire to return to Eden, the garden paradise. It’s where man once lived in perfect harmony with himself, his spouse, his environment, and most importantly to His Maker! Adam and Eve were in a most blessed, happy state! And it’s this Eden we are hoping to find to make us happy!

When Jesus spoke of His relation to His Father, He was joyful. He lived in obedience to the Father and told us everything God wanted us to know about Him and His plans to redeem us. How did Jesus respond to this task? Jesus said, “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full!! (John 15:11) Jesus’ mission is defined in terms of making us happy. Not in ourselves, but making us happy in the very God who is full of joy!

But why is that we struggle with being bored if this is what God is about? A.W. Tozer said, “Man is bored, because he is too big to be happy with that which sin is giving him.” We have settled for mud pies while God has prepared a banquet feast for us in His presence. Our problem is not that we seek happiness, but that we seek happiness in sin. But sin brings death and gloom. Jesus came that our joy would be full! Do you seek happiness? Then seek Jesus and you will find your soul full of delight! (See Psalm 16:11)

Looking for a church home? Come visit South Whitwell Baptist, 133 South Oak Street, Whitwell. Sunday Service: 10:45 AM. Visit our web page: www.southwhitwellbaptist.webs.com

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