It was a surprisingly radical thing for me to realize that God is happy.
John Piper helped me to see this about God — and for that I’m forever grateful. Realizing that God is happy, deeply happy, was like lifting a shade on a window — my understanding of God was a lot less cloudy and dark. All of the sudden, God was someone I wanted to know that much more. I like happy people — I often find that I want to be like them.
Maybe that’s what David felt when he said:
Blessed are you, O Lord;
Teach me your statutes!
Some translations have the exclamation mark at the end of this verse — and some don’t. I wish that I was a Bible scholar enough to know why some translations include the mark — but alas, I am not. I just know that I like the translations that include the exclamation mark. It seems to add an appropriate tone to what David is saying. A tone of delight and excitement.
We’ve spent weeks looking at Psalm 119 — and a lot of it is talking about how the happiest people in the universe are the one’s who walk in the ways of God. Considering they are God’s ways — then it would only make sense that HE is the happiest of all. And if that weren’t enough — the one person to ever fully and perfectly walk in the ways of God was Jesus. That must make Him the happiest person that ever existed — and by the way, Jesus is God.
These are words of adoration arising out of an intense admiration of the divine character, which the writer is humbly aiming to imitate.
Like I said, when I see a happy person, I often want to mimic them. I want to learn all about what makes them happy — and I’m not alone. Articles from places like Forbes, New York Times, or The Huffington Post are constantly floating across my computer screen with titles like “10 Traits of Happy People,” “5 Things Mentally Strong People Do,” “Untold Secrets of the Successful.”
Those articles are popular and prevalent because marketers have figured out that we want to learn how to be happy. David is no different — but instead of online articles, David went to the source of happiness — he sat down to learn at the feet of the happiest person in the universe.
It is as if David had said — I see that in conformity to You my way to happiness must lie, for You are supremely blessed; and if I am made like You in holiness, I will also partake in Your blessedness.
Let’s follow after one of the greatest worship leaders of our faith and make a habit of siting at the feet of the happiest Being in the universe. Isn’t it amazing that this great and happy God welcomes us?! He delights in His call to come and learn from Him the ways of holiness and happiness. He wants you and I to come to Him. To learn from Him. To be eternally happy like He is. That kind of abundant life isn’t just meant for us in the future (heaven), we can lean and grow into that eternal happiness and abundant life right now.
Come sit at the feet of your happy God and let Him teach you His ways.
Happy men usually rejoice to make others happy, and surely the happy God will willingly impart the holiness which is the fountain of happiness.