Are You Happy?

“Are you happy in this life?”  It’s a simple and probing question.  When you read it, you may have a flood of thoughts enter your head.  Some may be good, some may be bad.  With this question we usually start thinking of why we are, or are not, happy.  In Dennis Wholey’s book, Are You Happy, he reported that only 20% of Americans are happy.  So, most people would probably answer the above question with “no.”

So, what can we do to be happy?  Here are 5 tips to having a happier life:

1. Get rid of guilt. There are few things that make us feel worse than guilt.  Guilt can come from doing wrong to someone or just sin in general.  The best way to get rid of guilt is to obey God’s word.  If we get rid of guilt, we will not only live healthier, but happier.

2. Pray often. It feels good to have a strong, steady relationship with the creator of this world.  The more we pray, the less likely we are to lose our way.  If we can develop a consistent prayer life, it will most certainly lead to a happier life.

3. Keep an eye on the prize. The prize is heaven.  There is too much in this life that make us unhappy.  If we remember that the prize is heaven, it makes any troubles we go through seem less harsh and depressing.  We will be happier in this life if we think about the happiness we can have in the next life.

4. Give something away (no strings attached). Generosity feels good.  We are trained by our culture to hold on to every penny we come across.  When we give and see the happiness that it brings someone else, it will make us happy as well.

5. Encourage someone. This is similar to the previous point, except much easier.  We could potentially do this hundreds of times per day.  An uplifting word doesn’t just make the person listening happy, it makes the person giving the encouragement happy as well.

If we were walking down the street and meet a person who was not burdened down with guilt, who prayed often, who thought longingly about heaven, and who was generous and encouraging, surely that person would be happy.  Why can’t we be that person?  Let’s work on being happier people.  It is good for us and it is good for others.

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