DTLC Radio 058 – Happiness…The Worst Value You Can Have

Couple embracing - quote from Gary Thomas - The real purpose of marriage may not be happiness as much as it is holiness.

SAY WHAT?! What do you mean, “happiness is the worst value you can have”?

Nothing Happy About Happiness

You read that right. There is nothing happy about happiness…as a priority in your life. And yes, happiness is the worst value you can have. Why? Because happiness is a result and entirely circumstantial. True, happiness might result from experiencing good things. But what about those times when you experience bad things? Are you happy then? Typically not. And therein lies the problem.

Happiness is – more often than not – dependent on “happy” circumstances and situations. So, when we experience difficult times we tend to be unhappy. However, happiness being a “result” also means it is the outcome of being rooted in joy. It’s also a consequence of recognizing challenging times as opportunities to develop character. Character specifically that develops joy and contentment perspectives regardless of our circumstances.

Your Marriage Is Not For Making You Happy

The primary relationship in which we see this ill-conceived priority is marriage. Making happiness the goal of your marriage – or making happiness a priority, period – can only lead to frustration and heartache. When problems arise in your marriage (and they will) and you see them as “interfering with your happiness,” you’re in real trouble. Problems that interfere with your happiness will inevitably lead to conclusions that “something is wrong.” This may not be the case. In fact, something may be very right!

Scripture tells us in James 1:2-5 that we should be joyful about the challenges we face because they serve to develop our character and mature our faith. We become “complete, not lacking anything” by means of working through these issues. When you set happiness as the priority, any interference becomes suspect of incompatibility and many thus refuse to solve the problems and simply leave the relationship. We fail to see that we may have been brought to these challenges, problems, or issues by Divine Providence in order to grow and mature. God is always most interested in “conforming you to the image of Christ” (Romans 8:29). Sanctification is the primary goal in your marriage…to make each other holy (Ephesians 5:22-33) resulting in happiness.

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