The Pursuit of Happiness
Passage: Psalm 1:1–1:6
The Pursuit of Happiness
July 02, 2017
Pastor Mike Calacci
Psalm 1 is an absolute bedrock of the Christian life. God cares about our happiness.
- Happiness necessitates the resistance of God-free influences.
- A happy life necessitates the resistance of the influence of the lies from the wicked.
- Where are the God-free influences in your life? (TV, YouTube, music, family, friends, etc.)
- The lures can be very subtle.
- Happiness necessitates feasting on his Word.
- “Delight” in Hebrew is pleasure or seeking pleasure.
- Matthew 5-Jesus began that sermon with the same word “happy.” He said blessed are those who mourn, who are meek, who hunger and thirst for righteousness.
- “The law of the Lord” is the nature and characteristics of God. Meditate on who God is.
- He has written guidelines so we can be happy.
- Happiness is about a relationship with God, about the things the Bible talks about.
- Hedonism: living for pleasure outside of God.
- Meditation is like digestion: Chew on the verse. Don’t just read it.
III. Happiness necessitates embracing the results of your choices.
- If you choose God and his ways, you will be like a tree planted by streams of living water.
- If you choose yourself and your own ways - not so the wicked they are like chaff that the wind blows away, the ways of the wicked will perish.
- The opposite of love, selflessness, hatred, discord, jealousy, will go away.
- We don’t rejoice that those who are wicked go away, we rejoice that those wicked things will perish.
- Resist those things that tempt you away from God.
- Take seriously the dangers of the pathway away from God.
C.S. Lewis: “The Christian says, 'Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desire: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”
Arthur Bennett’s The Valley of Vision
Help me never to expect any happiness
from the world, but only in thee.
Let me not think that I shall be more happy
by living to myself,
for I can only be happy if employed for thee,
and if I desire to live in this world
only to do and suffer what thou dost allot me.
that if I do not live a life that satisfies thee,
I shall not live a life that will satisfy myself.
Help me to desire the spirit and temper of angels
who willingly come down to this lower world
to perform thy will,
though their desires are heavenly,
and not set in the least upon earthy things;
then I shall be of that temper I ought to have.
Help me not to think of living to thee
in my own strength,
but always to look to and rely on thee
Teach me that there is no greater truth than this,
that I can do nothing of myself.
Lord, this is the life that no unconverted man
yet it is an end that every godly soul
Let it be then my concern to devote myself
and all to thee.
Make me more fruitful and more spiritual,
for barrenness is my daily affliction and load.
How precious is time, and how painful to see it fly
with little done to good purpose!
I need thy help:
O may my soul sensibly depend upon thee
for all sanctification,
and every accomplishment of thy purposes
for me, for the world,
and for thy kingdom.