Everyone would like to be happy. The declaration of Independence says we should all be free to pursue happiness. The problem is, we do not find happiness by pursuing it. Happiness happens to us while we are pursuing something else. That something else may be Joy or Holiness. Happiness may find us while we are being thankful. Happiness can find us even in times of trouble.
Bette Davis understood this. She told the Monterey County, Calif., Herald, “A sure way to lose happiness, I found, is to want it at the expense of everything else.”
--The Week, September 2, 2011 p. 21 Illustration by Jim L. Wilson and Rodger Russell
2 Corinthians 13:1-14 (NASB) (1) This is the third time I am coming to you. EVERY FACT IS TO BE CONFIRMED BY THE TESTIMONY OF TWO OR THREE WITNESSES. (2) I have previously said when present the second time, and though now absent I say in advance to those who have sinned in the past and to all the rest as well, that if I come again I will not spare anyone, (3) since you are seeking for proof of the Christ who speaks in me, and who is not weak toward you, but mighty in you. (4) For indeed He was crucified because of weakness, yet He lives because of the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, yet we will live with Him because of the power of God directed toward you. (5) Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test? (6) But I trust that you will realize that we ourselves do not fail the test. (7) Now we pray to God that you do no wrong; not that we ourselves may appear approved, but that you may do what is right, even though we may appear unapproved. (8) For we can do nothing against the truth, but only for the truth. (9) For we rejoice when we ourselves are weak but you are strong; this we also pray for, that you be made complete. (10) For this reason I am writing these things while absent, so that when present I need not use severity, in accordance with the authority which the Lord gave me for building up and not for tearing down. (11) Finally, brethren, rejoice, be made complete, be comforted, be like-minded, live in peace; and the God of love and peace will be with you. (12) Greet one another with a holy kiss. (13) All the saints greet you. (14) The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, be with you all.