In this 2.5 minute video and the following transcript, I share some thoughts about happiness.
Paul says in Philippians 4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” There is an artificial distinction people often make between joy and happiness. Scripture actually has a lot of words like joy and happiness and delight and pleasure that are interrelated. God really does want us to be happy; after all, He made us to be a happy people. Go back to Genesis 1 and 2 and look at Adam and Eve in the garden, and you’ll see the beauty of the place.
But Scripture makes it clear that God is the ultimate source of happiness. Our problem is when we start seeking happiness in things that are secondary instead of primary. That’s where idolatry comes from. In our sinful state, we take things that God has made (which are in and of themselves good, intended for our benefit by God) and we make them what our life is all about. We elevate them to a place of lordship and they become idols in our lives.
Scripture says we are to seek our happiness in God. We’re happy because He’s our Creator and Redeemer. Yes, we have come to terms with the reality of our sin, which should make us very unhappy. But unhappiness is a temporary state because of what He did for us on the cross to resolve the problem of our sin and of our consequent unhappiness, which is the result of the curse. According to Scripture we are one day going to be delivered from the curse because of what God has done on our behalf.
What does that mean for us now in our lives? As we walk with God and seek to please Him, we also seek to find joy and happiness that’s derived from Him—a happiness that’s wrapped up in who He is. Matthew 25:21 says, “Well done, my good and faithful servant. ....Enter into your master’s happiness.” God says we can ultimately enter in to a happiness that exists within God: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.