“Don’t let anybody tell you what to do. Go ahead and do it. What’s important is that you are happy.”People give this advice like distributing freebies of a new drug in the market. They forget how dangerous it is.
Remember this: Just because you are happy doesn’t make your decision automatically right.
Your happiness is just one but not the only criteria of a good decision. There are more.
For instance, a person hooked into drugs cannot go up to his parents and say, “Dad, Mom, I am happy being a drug addict. So just let me be.”
When our happiness becomes the sole basis for our decisions, we can get into a lot of trouble. We begin to sanction the improper and even the immoral in the name of our happiness.
May I suggest some questions to ask one’s self before making a decision?
1. Will this decision honor God?
God doesn’t want you to be just happy. He also wants you to be holy.
Your holiness is your passport to a life of joy. “Happiness” is dependent on what’s “happening” to you. “Joy” on the other hand is dependent solely on being in a right relationship with your creator.
2. Will this decision hurt those who matter most in my life?
As the saying goes, “No one is an island.”
And because you’re not, you need to consider not only your happiness but the well-being of those around you. Always remember that people are affected by your decisions. And the most affected are those who truly love you and those you truly love.
3. Will this decision hurt myself?
Just because you don’t hurt anyone else doesn’t automatically make your decision right. Why? Because unknowingly, this decision might be destroying you.
For instance, a person hooked into gambling finds happiness in his vice not knowing that it subtly destroys his mind and will.
A couple in a wrong sexual relationship can give birth not just to unwanted children but also to incurable illnesses.
Drugs and porn bring pleasure but erode one’s self-control and self-respect.
Not everything that brings you happiness is actually good for you.
4. How will this decision affect the succeeding generations?
We cannot be pre-occupied with short-term band-aid solutions to our problems to the detriment of the future generation. We cannot be selfish at pushing an agenda to ease our predicament and for our own personal happiness with no regard for its effect on the generations that are to come.
We cannot sanction (and even applaud) the institutionalization of what is morally wrong as a quick-fix solution to our difficulty with no regard for its enduring effect in the minds and hearts of the youth of our nation and the world.
Making decisions is easy.
Making right decisions is not.
Today, make that first decision: To decide not only based on what would make you happy but based on something so much bigger than you!