Happiness?

In a discussion here about life choices, a commenter recently related that she wants to show her children  “that there are many happy ways to live life”.

But is ‘happy’ the goal?

If Thou shouldst give me choice to live in pleasure and keep my sins, or to have them burnt away with trial, give me sanctified affliction. ~ Valley of Vision

May God grant that today’s Christians will be willing to reject the world’s message of ‘happiness’ as the standard of conduct and embrace God’s command to deny ourselves, pick up our cross and follow Him.

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15 Responses to Happiness?
  1. Carron
    June 13, 2011 | 1:09 pm

    YES! YES! YES!! YES!! I will choose Christ’s JOY that surpasses temporary ‘happiness’ & I will suffer great hardship to be a good soldier for HIM! :) YES YES YES!! Thank you Kimberly :)

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  2. Cindy Lau
    June 13, 2011 | 1:12 pm

    Amen! So many will not stand up today to speak the truth. I tell people all the time it is not what I want, but what God wants.

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  3. Christine
    June 13, 2011 | 1:46 pm

    Yes! Perfect.

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  4. Karin
    June 13, 2011 | 2:21 pm

    AMEN and AMEN!

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  5. Brittany
    June 13, 2011 | 2:23 pm

    Amen!

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  6. Celee
    June 13, 2011 | 4:06 pm

    I’ve been reading the Essential Edwards Collection on Jonathon Edwards and “the good life”. Maybe I’ll write a post on it in the next day or two. I’ve ear-marked a few Psalms to go along with it, too. What is happiness, anyway? I agree with you, of course, and my husband and I often say that the goal of the Christian life is holiness, not happiness, but Edwards would argue that you really are choosing true, lasting happiness.

    Good thoughts, as always.

    Celee

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    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Excellent point and one I completely agree with. It is only when we give up serving self that we are able to find true happiness.

    I look forward to your post.

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  7. Sara
    June 13, 2011 | 7:49 pm

    I think of Romans 8:29, “For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son,…” Whatever your view of predestination, still God’s goal for us is to become more and more like Christ, who is the spotless Lamb of God.

    Not happiness, but holiness; not pleasure, but a life that brings honor to God.

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  8. Dawna
    June 13, 2011 | 10:52 pm

    I think many people confuse happiness with joy. Happiness is commonly defined as getting what you want/ what you think you deserve, when you want it. I have found personally that happiness tends to be fleeting and often times comes from satisfying ourselves, whereas joy is long lasting and comes from the Lord. “The joy of the Lord is our strength”, “The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart.” The following verse I have found especially true:
    “Weeping may last through the night,but joy comes with the morning.” It has been during great trials, when I have been poured out to where I thought I was empty,happiness (according to the world’s standards) could not be found within’ me, but when I called upon the Lord to help me and sustain me he infused me with His joy and peace. It is indescribable at times to explain how HE works. It amazes me that in the midst of chaos it can still be well with my soul, that is true joy… it goes beyond happiness, it is more substantial than that.
    May the joy of the Lord be yours today.

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    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Thanks Dawna.

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  9. Gabe
    June 14, 2011 | 12:56 am

    GREAT post! Short and sweet, but very much to the point! This is something we’ve been working on in our family. We don’t have to be “happy” with what is going on around us, but we do need to find joy and contentment in where God has us and learn!

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  10. Valerie
    June 14, 2011 | 3:59 pm

    Yes! And strangely when we do deny ourselves and follow Him through any trials, there is always PEACE and JOY and DELIGHT in HIM!

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  11. Kari Anderson
    June 15, 2011 | 9:24 am

    Unfortunately the US of A wants nothing but happiness all day and everyday. But there is such sweetness in letting go in the midst of sorrow & letting God take over. I was listening to a song this morning called “You Know Better Than I” It is a great reminder that God knows better than we do, and we don’t need to be “happy”… we need to be surrendered.

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  12. Hannah H
    June 15, 2011 | 4:28 pm

    My husbands sweet mother is going home to the Lord at the age of 54, we aren’t “happy” about it , but we have joy from the Lord during this time. He has given us grace and we are fellowshipping as a family and enjoying these last few weeks instead of moping around. Joy comes from the LORD !

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    Kimberly @ Raising Olives Reply:

    Blessings to your family during this time.

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