Walking the line between nerd and cool.

God Wants You Happy

Or does He?  We’re continuing our Urban Legends series at Sunday School this weekend looking at the statement “God wants you happy”.  It’s a tough one to think about.  Does He want us happy?  Or does He want us full of Joy?  And is there a difference for people today?

Tough question.  Looking forward to our discussion this weekend about it.  What are your thoughts?  Does God want you happy?


10 responses

  1. No. He wants you to be saved. He will take you through whatever emotion he needs to lead you to that end. And that is love. I might suggest Philip Yancey’s books on disappointment with God or his chapter on Job in “The bible that Jesus read” for those who want to read further after your discussion. Go get em Jason.

    May 28, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    • Phil! Your comment got sent to Spam, but I rescued it. 🙂

      Excellent point about God cycling you through emotions on your journey to faith. I’m reminded of Deuteronomy 8 (especially verses 7-17) where the children of Israel are reminded not to forget God in their “happiness” at being delivered to this great new land.

      Our happiness becomes dangerous when it leads us away from God and starts us down a road that diverges from His way. Maybe we could say:

      “God wants you happy, but if that happiness leads you away from God, watch out, ’cause He might rough you up.”

      Or something like that!

      May 29, 2009 at 2:10 pm

  2. Tom

    I think that God does want us happy. But, this happiness trule only comes from doing God’s will and following him wholeheartedly.

    May 28, 2009 at 5:01 pm

  3. Karen C.

    Isn’t some of this discussion just semantics? Modern culture would have us believe that we need THINGS in order to be “happy” or that sex will “make us happy” or the right partner will finally “make us happy.”

    I have learned that nothing in the world can MAKE you happy. Happiness is an attitude that God will gift to you if you accept and trust His way, His plan, His will. Happiness for me is a mixture of the JOY of the LORD and the CONTENTMENT that flows out of out trust in His plan for my life. Paul makes it very clear in Philipians that CIRCUMSTANCES have nothing to do with the abiding joy and contentment that is that foundation of happiness. (Phil 4 11-13)“I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”

    When I started to live in that kind of happiness, I finally realized that NOT ONLY DOES GOD WANT ME TO BE HAPPY , HE WILL GIVE ME THE GRACE TO LIVE THAT WAY. This kind of happiness isn’t a wordly happiness, it is a spiritual gift of the Spirit.

    The greatest thing about it is the way that living in Happiness despite your circumstances, becomes a witness to unbelievers. People have said to me – “Karen I can’t believe how strong and happy you have been through all of this trouble” I can respond – “It’s not my strength at all that helps me. Let me tell you where my happiness comes from. ” This is the best reason GOD WANTS ME TO BE HAPPY – because that kind of happiness is a magnet that draws others to Him.

    May 29, 2009 at 9:16 am

  4. @ Tom: Thanks for stopping by! Sounds like you’re on the same page as Karen.

    @Karen: It sounds like your description above is about Joyfulness. For me, happiness is derived from your circumstances, joyfulness from God alone. So I can be unhappy and joyful at the same time.

    Craig Groeschel at lifechurch.tv provided the starting point for our discussion on Sunday. He gives this statement as a followup to the question:

    “If God wants me happy and I’m not, then God failed.”

    Ultimately, I think God wants you to worship and follow Him, and happiness often comes from that, though I can think of lots of instances in the scriptures where I wouldn’t be “happy” if I were one of several devoted followers who were martyred, though I could see myself being joyful.

    I don’t know. It’s an interesting question.

    May 29, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    • Mike

      I disagree with the statement of shock, If God wanted me to be happy, and I’m not,then God failed. That is dangerous reasoning. We could then say, If God wants all people to be saved (1 Peter 3) and they aren’t; He failed. That if God wants His children to obey (which He does); and he doesn’t…then He failed. God wants to conform us into the image of His Son..but if we conform to the world…then God failed.

      I am just leery of this statement. I think it is clear in Scripture that God wants you to be Happy… see the beatitudes…but more importantly, see Psalm 119:1-3… Happiness is often wed to holiness; in fact, you can’t enjoy TRUE happiness, apart from obedience.

      December 18, 2009 at 3:19 pm

      • Interesting points Mike. Thanks for stopping by!

        December 18, 2009 at 4:05 pm

  5. Unfortunately, most words in the English language have way too many meanings – whether they are “official” or “unofficial” definitions!!!

    “Happy,” as it is often used, is an emotion. We all know that emotions come and go over and over and over again. They are fleeting and therefore really can’t be the standard for anything. Therefore God would not make “happy” and end goal for His children.

    That being said, however, I take great joy in bringing happiness to my own children. The best times we have together are when we get to do something for/with them that is fun and makes them happy (as in, the emotion). It’s one of the (many!) ways that we as parents show our love for them. Since we are created in God’s image – fallen though we may be – I have to assume that God would take equal, if not more, pleasure in making us “happy.” It is not the ultimate goal! But it is just one of the (many!) ways that He shows His love for us.

    You all should have a really interesting discussion!

    May 29, 2009 at 9:02 pm

  6. Karen C.

    Good point Eric!

    May 29, 2009 at 9:35 pm

  7. sweetsoup

    I say He wants us to be useful. The gravy is being useful brings joy.

    June 1, 2009 at 2:11 pm

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