Tozer on Leadership - Monday, December 23, 2013

Trials and Pain: Happiness is Not the Goal

You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.—2 Timothy 2:3-4

That we are born to be happy is scarcely questioned by anyone. No one bothers to prove that fallen men have any moral right to happiness, or that they are in the long run any better off happy. The only question before the house is how to get the most happiness out of life. Almost all popular books and plays assume that personal happiness is the legitimate end of the dramatic human struggle.

Now I submit that the whole hectic scramble after happiness is an evil as certainly as is the scramble after money or fame or success....

How far wrong all this is will be discovered easily by the simple act of reading the New Testament through once with meditation. There the emphasis is not upon happiness but upon holiness. God is more concerned with the state of people's hearts than with the state of their feelings. Undoubtedly the will of God brings final happiness to those who obey, but the most important matter is not how happy we are but how holy. The soldier does not seek to be happy in the field; he seeks rather to get the fighting over with, to win the war and get back home to his loved ones. There he may enjoy himself to the full; but while the war is on his most pressing job is to be a good soldier, to acquit himself like a man, regardless of how he feels. Of God and Men, pp. 48-49

"Oh Lord, redirect my focus. Help me today to be a 'good soldier of Jesus Christ.' Amen."

Reprinted from Tozer on Christian Leadership by A.W. Tozer, copyright © 2001 by Zur Ltd. Used by permission of WingSpread Publishers, a division of Zur Ltd.

Tozer on Christian Leadership is protected by copyright and may not be copied, reproduced, republished, uploaded, posted, translated, transmitted or distributed in any way.

Tozer on Christian Leadership was compiled by Ron Eggert.

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