Blaise Pascal said that
“All men seek happiness. This is without exception. Whatever different means they employ, they all tend to this end. The cause of some going to war, and of others avoiding it, is the same desire in both, attended with different views. The will never takes the least step but to this object. This is the motive of every action of every man, even of those who hang themselves.”
This may sound like a distinctively un-Christian notion, that all you do is based on your own desire for happiness, but, at the core, I think he is right.
Nowhere in the Bible are we commanded to live a sombre, serious, and sullen life. In fact, D.Martyn Lloyd-Jones went so far as to say that this is, in fact, a poor witness to those who look at you and think ‘Wow, being a Christian is miserable’ (see his work ‘Spiritual Depression’, or our corresponding pieces).
We see time and again in the Word that we are to find delight, pleasure, and joy in the Lord (Psalm 37.4, Philippians 4.4, 1 Timothy 6.6, Nehemiah 8.11, John 15.11, for example).
The crux of this, the potential problem,
is where we find pleasure,
in whom do we find pleasure;
ourselves or in God?
Our prayer today then is to find this, to find where we find pleasure. John Piper wrote that God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him. So, are you? Are you at your most happy, delighted, pleasure-filled, and joyous when you are closest to your heavenly Father?
Here’s today’s BIG prayer – Lord, I know I am created to feel emotions, to enjoy, to love, to feel joy. Today I pray that you would show me where I am wrongly finding these joys, and help me by the power of your Holy Spirit to find them in You alone, as the Lord Jesus did.