Personal Journal

How seeking happiness can make you miserable

O my soul, you have said to the Lord, “You are my Lord, My good­ness is noth­ing apart from You.” 3 As for the saints who are on the earth, “They are the ex­cel­lent ones, in whom is all my de­light.” Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god; Their drink offer ings of blood I will not offer, Nor take up their names on my lips.    Psalm 16:2-4

Did you know that seeking out happiness could actually turn out to make you miserable? Look at this verse: Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after other gods.

What does it mean that they went after other gods? It means that they thought that these other gods would make them happier then to serve the Lord. So they decided to follow them instead of following the Lord. But it’s not the truth. The bible says that their sorrows shall be multiplied.

You might think, “This doesn’t apply to us today, we aren’t seeking after other gods.” But yes you are. When you idolize other things or people, you are worshiping another god and not the Lord. When you put more time and thought into other things than you do the Lord, you are worshiping false gods.

What are the gods that teenagers are worshiping today?

– The gods of socializing.

– The gods of video games

– The gods of tv and movies

– The gods of sports

– The gods of music

– And  the gods of relationships.

None of these things are bad in of themselves, but when you put them before the Lord, they become gods. In ancient times people used to widely worship idols made of of wood and stones. Is there anything bad about wood and stones? No, of course not, but when you worship them you have put them in an improper place. The same is true with the sun and the moon and the stars. Is there anything wrong with the sun and moon and stars? No, of course not, but there are people still today who worship the stars and the moon instead of worshiping Him who made them. It is a great insult to God for men to worship the work of His hands. In fact, the first commandment of the ten commandments is, “You shall have no other god before me.’ This means God should be number one.

The same thing applies when it comes to gods that teenagers worship. The are not necessarily bad things in of themselves, but when you place them in a higher place in your life then you place God, you have made them your idol. You have become an idol worshiper.

I want to particularly address the worship of the god of relationships. When thoughts of a relationship consume you, when the desire for a relationship consumes you, or when you will do anything, whether good or evil, to form or keep a relationship, you have become an worshiper of the god of relationships. When you will ignore the God of heaven to fulfill the desires of your flesh you have become a worshiper of the god of relationships.

And, let me ask you a question: Why do people worship the god of relationships? Do they not do it to make themselves happy? Do they not think that the thing that will make them happiest in life is this relationship with this boy or this girl? Are they seeking after relationships for any other reason? I think not.

But lets look back at the scripture that I’ve already mentioned: “Their sorrows shall be multiplied who hasten after another god.”

The truth that I am trying to portray is that people who are seeking happiness through relationships will actually come to be full of sorrows. And their sorrows will be multiplied.

I could tell you story after story, but I’ll share with you these two:

There was a girl who was 16 years old. She feel in love with a guy. This guy was her everything. In fact, when her parents disapproved of the relationship, she decided to move out to live with this guy. She knew this was the one. She had never felt this way before. She loved him with everything that was in her. She never liked to be apart from him. When he would throw fits of anger, she would forgive him. When he would cheat on her, she would assure herself that he would not do it again. But time passed and things got worse. So much so that she feared for her life and the life of their baby girl. When he got out of jail she nailed the windows shut and secured the doors for fear that he would come and kill her. Her dad would spend the night at her house with a gun because they believed the threat was so eminent.

This girl worshiped the god of relationships, did she not? Did it turn out well for her? No, it didn’t. Certainly it wasn’t her fault for what happened, but don’t you think if she would have followed the commandments of the Lord that she may have avoided all this?

The same is true for guys. When I worked at the funeral home I picked up the body of a man who hung himself by an orange extension cord from the cross beams inside of his barn. When I arrived at the scene I saw the ladder kicked down and the cut cord dangling from the ceiling. His dead body laid on the ground with the other side of cord so tight around his neck that his tongue stuck out a little. I later found out that he had killed himself because his wife had left him. He worshiped the god of relationships and when his sorrow was multiplied he thought he couldn’t handle life anymore.

The point I am trying to make is that you don’t know what makes you happy. You need Someone Who knows everything to tell you what will make you happy. Have you ever had an experience where something or someone made you happy for a time and then after a while it turned out to make you miserable? Or have you ever thought something was going to make you happy and then found out that it didn’t? We all have. SEE, it’s proof that you don’t even know yourself well enough to know what will make you happy.

For example:

I once thought that having a certain dog would make me happy. It was a beautiful dog, but it somehow had eternal diarrhea. This dog quickly became miserable and we got rid of it.

I once thought that having a nintendo 8-bit would make me happy, but I ended up selling it in a yard sale and it probably now lives in the city dump.

I once thought that this girl from high school would make me happy, but she dumped me for another guy and is now married to this Eskimo looking fellow.

I once thought that having a cell phone would make me happy. I still think that, but it’s not true.

I once thought that getting married would make me happy, but then I got married.

I once thought that getting a new car would make me happy, but now I have car payments and the newness is gone.

Things and people can never make you happy. Only God can make you happy. And when God makes you happy, everything else becomes happy as well. I have a happy dog, a happy wii, a happy girl friend (my wife!), and a happy car. The happiness spills down from the top and covers it all.

You’ve got to have it in the right order! Keep God first no matter what. And follow His commandments. He knows what will make you happy. He knows that exact right person for you when you are ready. He knows that sex outside of marriage will only lead to disaster. Be close to Him and He will lead you down the path that is good and right.

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