“Doesn’t God want me to be happy?” Virtually everyone has asked this question at some point. And the answer is…yes! But God’s plan for our fulfillment looks way different than anything we would expect. Join your Crossroads family for a journey through some of the most famous passages of Scripture––the Beatitudes and the fruit of the Spirit––for the key to unlocking God’s definition of true happiness, in our new series Crazy Happy!
1. Yes, God wants you to be happy
- Often, we doubt God wants us to be happy. So instead of seeking him for happiness, we chase after fulfillment on our own terms, creating an endless “hamster wheel” where we never find what we’re looking for.
- If we trust God’s character and his desire for our fulfillment, we will seek him for our satisfaction. Satisfaction is only found when God is in his rightful place in our hearts, on the throne. When we realize who God is and what he’s done, we can be satisfied in him.
Reflect on your knowledge of God’s character. Do you trust he has your best interests at heart? Is there any specific desire you possess that you need to entrust to God’s loving care?
2. Happiness is not found where we normally look for it
- We’re back to the “hamster wheel”––our desperate attempts to look for happiness apart from the one who is the source of all good gifts (James 1:17).
- Jeremiah describes this as looking for water in broken, empty cisterns. Anything they mistakenly promise us “leaks.” It doesn’t last! And we see this all the time. People around us are searching everywhere to be satisfied.
If God wants us to be happy, it begs the question, “Why are so many of us unhappy?” We have to receive nourishment from the Lord.
Where are you seeking nourishment for your life? What influence do those things have on you? How can you seek fulfillment in God?
3. Jesus defines happiness as being blessed
- Jesus spoke extensively about happiness in the Beatitudes, in the Sermon on the Mount. It’s one of his most famous teachings, but so few of us see it for what it is––a guide to the truly beautiful and fulfilling life.
- Jesus has already explained God’s crazy plan for happiness to us in this section of Scripture. It’s crazy because it’s not a happiness devoid of mourning, or even persecution, but it’s so much deeper, it keeps you rooted in the joy of the Lord no matter what is going on around you.
Describe the circumstances that are rocking your world right now. How secure do you feel in the midst of that? How is God asking you to trust him more deeply, independent of what you’re seeing around you?
4. The blessed person bears fruit
- When we embrace God’s definition of the beautiful life, we begin to be who he designed us to be. It’s when we are most fully ourselves and most like Jesus.
- As we live into that person––the person God made us to be––and as we walk in the Spirit, our lives blossom and bear fruit. We become a blessing to others.
Does your life bear fruit and bless others? Describe a fruitful area of your life, and identify an area where you need to ask the Spirit to bear fruit in and through you to a greater extent.
Optional Follow-up Questions:
- What makes you say that?
- How do you feel about that?
- How would you explain your answer to a non-Christian friend or neighbor?
- Why did God design it to work that way? Why not just do (whatever else) instead?
- What would you say to someone who disagrees with that?
- Why do we really have to do it like that? Why can’t we just go (some other route) instead?