I Don’t Want You to Be Happy…

… I want you to be holy!

I_Don't_Want_HappyTHIS link seems to be making its way around the homeschooling world. While I find his lecture to be quite interesting, I had a few thoughts I wanted to share. 

I see his point, really I do. This young man is excitedly explaining how his parents “hacked” his education and learning to meet his needs. I will even go so far as to say I agree, up to a point. We ought to adjust our children’s learning to meet needs and learning styles! However, there is one factor with which I disagree…. I do not want my children to grow up and be happy; I want my children to grow up and be holy.

What is the basis our children’s education? That is the foundation upon which all other learning will take place. The young man is absolutely correct in one respect. It isn’t about what you will do with your life, career wise. It isn’t about how “successful” you become nor how much money you make. However, I would also argue, it isn’t about just being happy either.

If my children live for just their own happiness, they are being selfish. They will have lives which become self-centered and self-glorified. They will seek temporary, transient pleasure, rather than things of eternal value.

Instead, I want my children’s education to be based on the foundation that all they do is for the glory of God. He is to be the center of all they do and He is to be their purpose. When He reveals the path our children should take, then our learning begins to form around where He is leading; not where our own desires might divert us.

For example, one of my daughters is gifted with the ability to write. Seeing her talents, we pray about how the Lord is going to use this and ask Him to guide us in her learning. We supplement her studies with plenty of writing opportunities and venues which encourage this. Throughout all of her learning, our goal is not to make her famous or “successful”, it is to find out where the Lord is going to use this talent and how He will direct this gift.

Now, here is the interesting part. When we base our lives on what He wants, we get the desires of our heart. Why? Because now our desires align with what is best and He loves to bless us beyond all we could imagine. Those talents, gifts, and heartfelt desires become a reality because He is using those for His own purpose and glory.

Another fascinating aspect to this, is that the bi-product of a holy life is joy! Joy is so much better than happiness. Happiness is circumstantial and comes from the happenings, fleeting moments, in your life. Joy, however, is deep-rooted in a life well-lived and an inner peace which can only come from God. It’s not that happiness is wrong, but why stop at happy, when you could have joy?

Our children are overwhelmed by joy. This stems not from circumstances, which might change, but from a natural gift which we openly acknowledge comes from God. When they are following His leading, joy simply emanates. More importantly, they are walking righteously.

So, I guess you could say, “I don’t want you to just be happy; I want you to experience joy!”

‘As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, but as He who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”’
I Peter 1:14-16

📢 Chime In!: Sometimes the Lord brings delight in the smallest of things. What wonderful spark of joy has God shared with you today?

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4 thoughts on “I Don’t Want You to Be Happy…

  1. Well said. I have homeschooled my four children all the way through, and have graduated three with one left. I don’t believe happiness goes along well with chemistry or algebra two, but my kids were content and peaceful about it. Now my kids are in college, all of them working, and their joy at work really confuses people. Someone even lodges a complaint to the manager that my daughter was too happy (!). The joy comes from God, nothing else. So all this to say that I agree with you. I enjoyed the read!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. Pingback: Is Happiness a Factor For Choosing Homeschooling? | A Homeschool Mom

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