Matthew 6 talks about how my happiness lies in the treasures I store. If I store treasures on earth, then my happiness is contingent on maintaining temporary things, things that are not built to last. Is that the kind of happiness I want? If I spend my time chasing after temporary things, I will never be happy. Rather, I will be caught up in the pursuit of happiness, a pursuit that cannot be achieved by obtaining material wealth. What has happened is that I have taken on the world’s mantra that I should achieve the American dream, and expect God to make me happy by giving me that dream. But when my dreams are not realized, I are no longer happy with myself or our God because my happiness was based on OBTAINING STUFF. God is looking for a people who are happy with obtaining Him and His spiritual blessings, which are not meant to satisfy the flesh, but are meant to satisfy the spirit, a transcendence of wealth from the natural to the supernatural. This intangible happiness can only be accessed through faith, for it is the substance of things hoped for and the evidence of things not seen.
That’s why I can’t allow myself to be swept away by a world that changes its mind about what constitutes as happiness every 15 seconds. If my happiness was based on having the latest gadget, I would be sad every 3 months because every day, new phones, iPads, watches, computers, and other STUFF come out, and it’s impossible to keep up. By the time I can afford the iPad 1, here comes the iPad 7. Get a flip phone, now phones come in watches. I cannot let what others dictate as happiness become my definition of happiness, for if I do that, I will never be happy.
But then take it a step further. I can’t even base happiness on what I think happiness should be. Even if I don’t prescribe to the norms of society, if I base my happiness on what makes ME happy, I set myself up to be disappointed because those things will not last nor will come to pass the way I expect them to. Because my will is not God’s will (in the literal, two separate entities sense), it is not guaranteed that my desires, even if Godly, will turn out the way I expect them to. And if my happiness is contingent on my desires coming to pass as I expect them to, I only end up sad, depressed, angry, and bitter because things did not go my way. That’s not the kind of happiness I want, for if that’s the kind of happiness I pursue, then I have given POWER over to things, saying to these things or people, “I give you the authority to dictate whether I am happy or not.” I submit my pleasure button to things, not to God who gives me dominion over things. I’d rather submit to God and enjoy life in Him regardless of whether I obtain things, than to submit to things and be miserable when those things pass away.