Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What Is True Happiness?

The other day, I met a man who claims to be happy, yet he does not own much of the material comforts common to many people, and it got me thinking: many who are poor enjoy happiness while many who are wealthy have not yet tasted of that sweet nectar.

Happiness is a natural desire for humankind. We all yearn to feel that sense of well-being in spirit, soul, body and affairs but our failure is that we often seek it in ways that are not right for us. Some seek happiness in worldly pleasure, others in acquiring wealth, yet others in acquiring fame and still, many other ways. This shows us that happiness is not a matter of the acquisition of wealth or fame.

The Scriptures teach: “Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding” (Proverbs 3:13). Yes, wisdom and understanding are at the root of our sense of happiness. And they are vital keys to the solutions of the problems we face. These two attributes of God negate patterns of discord, confusion and conflict, bringing us into happiness. To “find wisdom” and “get understanding” mean to come to realize how limited we are in controlling our lives and affairs and that God is in charge always.

Wisdom and understanding promote a spirit of discernment which is one of the greatest gifts of God. This is spiritual maturity at its best and should be our daily quest.

Though we are to take the initiative for change and making choices, yet God is still in control of all things and works through us individually and corporately to bring about a better life for us and the world at large.

What is true happiness?

True happiness is a condition of contentment and harmony that radiates through us from within. It is from above, not beneath. To be happy does not mean that we have everything we want out of life, but that we have such a great depth of wisdom and understanding we are better able to meet life’s reversals in a more positive way. It also means we are at rest within our peace with God and ourselves.

Can we cultivate happiness? How? We cultivate happiness by observing these spiritual principles: firstly, by seeking God for His wisdom and understanding in all our undertakings, secondly, by yielding our human will about our affairs to God, and thirdly, by following through on His directions. Then, as we become willing to be led and taught, the life of Spirit unfolds and we find true happiness.

May the Lord richly bless you with His peace, love and prosperity.

Suggested Readings: Proverbs 3:13, Proverbs 3:19, Proverbs 4:7, Proverbs 8:34, Proverbs 16:20, Proverbs 28:14, Proverbs 29:18.

Thought For Today: The Spirit of God in me is wisdom and understanding and as I live and move in attunement with Him, His qualities touch me and I am blessed.

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