Is It OK to Want to be Happy?
2018-09-23 1 IS IT OK TO WANT TO BE HAPPY? The Pursuit of Happiness 2 The story so far… 1 ■ God is happy ■ God wants us to be happy – Not only eternally, but also now – In fact, He commands it 3 Christianity vs happiness? 1 ■ Too often, believers reinforce the stereotype that Christian living is opposed to happiness – Because temptation includes a promise to happiness, it has become guilty by association ■ Joy vs happiness? – “Joy is not an emotion; it is a choice.” – But the Bible uses the terms joy and happiness interchangeably 4 Everyone wants to be happy 1 ■ Seeking happiness is as natural as breathing ■ The Fall didn’t generate the human longing for happiness; it derailed and misdirected it ■ God urges us to find real happiness – The only real happiness to be found in this life is from God – whether we recognize it or not – God is glorified when we are happy in Him, so our happiness shouldn’t be weighed against His glory but seen as part of it. 5 Happiness and mission 1 ■ Happiness draws people to Christ – Miserable Christians offer nothing to a suffering world ■ If we say the gospel won’t bring happiness, any perceptive listener should respond, “Then how is it good news?” 6 In summary 1 ■ All people desire happiness. ■ The good news of Jesus Christ offers people both eternal happiness and the only real present happiness. ■ People are drawn to Christ when they see true happiness in his followers and are pushed away when they see us chronically unhappy. ■ God is the sole origin of true happiness, and we should wholeheartedly seek our delight in Him. 1