Daily Archives: July 11, 2008

Do We Deserve to be Happy?

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Kevin and I were discussing if  ‘we deserve to be happy’. (click on his name to see his post about it)

We are in a bit of a disagreement but I think its just  a matter of semantics. Then again, maybe not.

Here is what I found:

Sidenote: this is so cool, had to give you a link to the Online Etymology Dictionary , its a guide to what words used to mean or originally meant.

Lets dissect the word deserve first, it means:

 

verb (used with object) 1. to merit, be qualified for, or have a claim to (reward, assistance, punishment, etc.) because of actions, qualities, or situation: to deserve exile; to deserve charity; a theory that deserves consideration.
-verb (used without object) 2. to be worthy of, qualified for, or have a claim to reward, punishment, recompense, etc.: to reward him as he deserves; an idea deserving of study.

and the etymology dictionary states it as:

1292, from O.Fr. deservir, from L. deservire “serve well,” from de- “completely” + servire “to serve.” From “be entitled to because of good service” (s sense found in L.L.), meaning generalized c.1300 to “be worthy of.”

Happy means:

adjective, -pi·er, -pi·est. 1. delighted, pleased, or glad, as over a particular thing: to be happy to see a person.
2. characterized by or indicative of pleasure, contentment, or joy: a happy mood; a happy frame of mind.
3. favored by fortune; fortunate or lucky: a happy, fruitful land.
4. apt or felicitous, as actions, utterances, or ideas.
5. obsessed by or quick to use the item indicated (usually used in combination): a trigger-happy gangster. Everybody is gadget-happy these days.

-Synonyms 1. joyous, joyful, blithe, cheerful, merry, contented, gay, blissful, satisfied. 3. favorable, propitious; successful, prosperous. See fortunate. 4. appropriate, fitting, opportune, pertinent.
-Antonyms 1. sad.

and from the etymology dictionary:

1340, “lucky,” from hap “chance, fortune” (see haphazard), sense of “very glad” first recorded c.1390. Ousted O.E. eadig (from ead “wealth, riches”) and gesælig, which has become silly. O.E. bliðe “happy” survives as blithe. From Gk. to Ir., a great majority of the European words for “happy” at first meant “lucky.” An exception is Welsh, where the word used first meant “wise.” Used in World War II and after as a suffix (e.g. bomb-happy, flak-happy) expressing “dazed or frazzled from stress.” Happiness is first recorded 1530. Happy hour “early evening period of discount drinks and free hors-d’oeuvres at a bar” is first recorded 1961. Happy-go-lucky is from 1672. Happy as a clam (1636) was originally happy as a clam in the mud at high tide, when it can’t be dug up and eaten.

Happy in the bible is translated as blessed, joyful, joyous, happy, to be glad, to be well placed, mirth, gladness.

I spotted several articles on the web about deserving happiness, Simple Tips to Achieve It ( I agree with points 1, 4, 7, 8 )

Breathing for Meditation, excerpt: it is important to reflect on what true happiness is and where it can be found.

From this blog:You know when you are aligned with source and purpose when you feel joy in what you are thinking and doing! ”  (I guess my source would be God)

30 Happiness Tips: #16, realize you deserve happiness.

From Happiness.co.uk: The key to happiness is, you don’t deserve to be happy, you decide to be happy. and To be happy, choose happiness. To be peaceful, choose peace. To be free, choose freedom. Deserving is guilt in another guise, and therefore is useless. So, wipe the word “deserve” from your vocabulary. And teach no one that they deserve happiness or anything else. And when you are happy, think not, “What did I do to deserve this?” Pray, rather, “Dear God, thank you!” Gratitude enables receiving – effortless receiving. Gratitude is an affirmation – it attracts what it focuses on. Gratitude is enough.

From Applying the Secret: the About page.

From Wikipedia.this caught my eye from the religious and spiritual views section:

As an example, according to Augustine‘s Confessions, he lived much of his life without God. He sinned much and recognized his sinfulness. As a youth, he sinned for its own sake, and later, in the pursuit of a perceived good. When he lost a dear friend to death, it troubled him a lot, and he turned to God for answers. He turned to God to find true happiness and was converted to Christianity. He found that true happiness can only come from a relationship with God and appreciating God’s creation for His sake, and not its own.

Ok a bunch of worldly or secular examples, now on to the Word of God.

Just looking at scripture references to the word happy and happiness leads me to believe that people that were happy in the bible were pleasing God, were doing right, were walking in the way of the Lord

Happiness of the Saints in this life

and happiness of the wicked is here.

So what can we conclude from all this?

Do we deserve to be happy?

Do we merit, qualify for, or have claim to, or even worthy of happiness?

I guess we would have to decide what our ‘happiness’ is, huh? Something indicative of pleasure, joy, contentment.

Is God your happiness? Is serving/obeying/glorifying God your joy, contentment, pleasure?

If my happiness is laying on the couch, eating, drinking and being lazy, do I have a clam to that? Am i worthy of that?

If my happiness is making others happy, do i merit that, or qualify for that kind of happiness?

Kevin said God wants us to be happy.

I say God wants us to obey/worship/love and honor Him.

We should be happy doing just that.

Your heart is what your eyes focus on. Focus your loving gaze on your Faithful Creator.

Thoughts? Blessings, Kristina 

De 24:5 – [In Context|Read Chapter|Original Hebrew] “When a man takes a new wife, he shall not go out with the army nor be charged with any duty; he shall be free at home one year and shall give happiness to his wife whom he has taken.  Ec 9:7 – [In Context|Read Chapter|Original Hebrew] Go {then,} eat your bread in happiness and drink your wine with a cheerful heart; for God has already approved your works.  Isa 52:7 – [In Context|Read Chapter|Original Hebrew] How lovely on the mountains Are the feet of him who brings good news, Who announces peace And brings good news of happiness, Who announces salvation, {And} says to Zion, “Your God reigns!”  La 3:17 – [In Context|Read Chapter|Original Hebrew]My soul has been rejected from peace; I have forgotten happiness.  

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