Are the kids "happy"?

Harold Fickett, over at Catholic Exchange, noted the recent conversation between Kirk Cameron and Piers Morgan about what either of them would do if a son announced he was gay.  Piers' response was that all he really wanted was for his son to be happy.

I started thinking: do I care if my kids are happy?

Certainly, Scripture is full of "happy"....but not in the world's way of thinking about "happy".  Just read the Beatitudes.  Happy are the poor in spirit?  Happy are the sorrowful?  Really?  Can't I just have a Coke and smile?  A Big Mac?  A new iPad?  Now THAT stuff would make me happy, and the kids too.

I think my kids - now that they are all teens - would frankly be happy if I just left them alone.  No nagging to do chores, finish homework, get up for Mass, let the dog in.  No unrequested advice about how to handle that "mean" teacher or that boss that won't let up.  Certainly no conversations about no sex, no drugs, and could you turn down that awful music?????

Do I want my kids to be happy?  Yes.  Do I want my kids to be happy in the way the world defines happy?  Not so much.  I know enough now to realize that "happy" is fleeting, it can be bought and sold, it comes cheap and it rarely lasts. I guess what I really want my kids to be is joyful, compassionate, and obedient.  And the world doesn't sell a lot of that. 

Happy is he whose fault is take away, whose sin is covered.  Happy the man to whom the Lord imputes not guilt, in whose spirit there is no guile. -Ps. 32: 1-2

I want my kids to live in the truth, and as hard, difficult and counter-cultural as that may be, that is going to be what makes them - and all of us - happy.

I guess that means I am going to keep nagging.  My kids will be thrilled....

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