Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Lies Christians Believe #5

God isn’t concerned about your happiness; he’s only interested in your wholeness. Have you ever heard that? If you have, then you’ve been told a lie. Since when is happiness not considered being part of wholeness?

Last week I had the following conversation with God.

Me: Do you love me?
God: Yes.
Me: How much?
God: I died for you.
Me: But how did you endure the cross? (I was thinking about Hebrews 12:2)
God: Because I was thinking about how I love how you express total joy.
Me: I thought it was because of the joy in heaven.
God: The joy in heaven is the fulfillment of your joy.

Joy. Happiness. We can argue about semantics but it is Biblically correct to teach his disciples Jesus wants us to be happy, and it’s why he died.

John 15:11, I have told you this (about abiding in Christ) so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.

How much joy did Jesus have? Hebrews 1:8a, 9b, But about the Son he says...therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy.

Jesus was the happiest guy ever – happier than all of his companions and in John 15, he told his disciples (newly elevated to friendship status) that his joy will be in them so their joy is complete (made full, not lacking anything).

But wait, there’s more. John 16:24, Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive and your joy will be complete.

Yippee, ki-yay! Jesus wants to give me the things I ask for because he knows it will make my joy complete. I’d agree with that. I love gifts; it’s one of my love languages. Thank you Jesus, you know me so well.

And as for making me whole? How about this for a solution, taken from Psalm 36:5-10:

Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the great deep.
O Lord, you preserve both man and beast.
How priceless is your unfailing love!
Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wing.
They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life; in your light, we see light.
Continue your love to those who know you, your righteousness to the upright in heart.
Wholeness comes in the light of his love; his love is abundance and all good things. Everything is exposed in the light. It is only in the light of God we can see. And then, as Psalms 139:23-24 says, he will expose waywardness and lead us into eternity.

It’s the kindness of God that leads to repentance. Kindness makes me happy. God wants us to be whole, but he doesn't take out happiness or joy to do it. To believe otherwise is a fabrication that comes from the enemy to create joyless Christians.

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