Think of it this way . . .

Happiness is _________. You fill in the blank. Your list will most likely be completely different even from those closest to you. Mine might be enough time each week for hiking the hills and riverbanks of West Texas, looking for Indian artifacts and taking photographs of nature’s wonders. A lot of what we do in life, you see, is motivated by what makes us happy. We all have basic wants and needs (it’s like, “if it feels good, do it.”). So. What is it we want? 

We want friends who will truly love us, satisfaction in the career we choose, enough money to live comfortably and to impress others with an honest and good character. I think this is true for at least most of us. And, too, we don’t want to be pushed, held back or otherwise discouraged from doing these good things in a way that makes us happy. Everything we do is done for a reason (whether we fully realize the reason or not). 

We are motivated by natural cravings to learn, earn and yearn – we want to feel important to others, to seek a mate (or stay single), and to enjoy the spice of life through change and variety, which helps us stay interested in hanging around for a while. This means that we had better prepare ourselves to take on life as it comes, because, much of the time, life won’t be a “bed of roses.” (You probably learned that early on). Frustrations and obstacles will confront you often enough, even if you’re a morally upright person and as wealthy as all get-out. Think about Henry Ford, with all his fame and money, he never did own a Cadillac. Yeah, it can be rough out there sometimes! Here’s some wise advice:

“And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope.” (Romans 5:3–4, NASB95) 

Don’t worry, be happy.

-John D.

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