Tue. Mar 5th, 2024

Numbers 6:22-27; Psalm 67; Galatians 4:4-7; Luke 2:16-21

What do I mean when I wish someone a happy New Year? How do I understand happiness? What do I really wish for? Good luck in work? Money? Being loved, liked and respected by others? What is happiness for me is not necessarily happiness for someone else. I want happiness, I’m looking for it, I miss it, like every other human being. And if I do experience it, it is for a very short time, in a fleeting and imperfect way. Because I’m not looking where its true source is. Praise, acceptance and appreciation are still important to me, even though I know that they do not bring joy for long and that they pass after the first excitement.

Why don’t I feel happy when I think that God is always with me, that He turns His face towards me, that He gives me peace and His grace? Why don’t I rejoice in being His child? The shepherds returned from their meeting with baby Jesus worshiping and praising God. Wouldn’t they have felt happiness then? This navel-gazing, too much focus on yourself does not allow you to be delighted with God, and His presence, His love. It’s an obstacle to loving God. That’s why what’s happiness for me bursts like a soap bubble. I fall into sadness and depression again. And the question keeps coming back: What do I mean when I wish someone to be happy?