What Makes You Happy?

1 Oct

My Take


I saw a documentary called, “Happy,” recently. It shows what makes people happy or unhappy all over the world.

The most shocking thing I learned is that many people in Japan are unhappy and worse they actually drop dead of overwork. It’s called Keroshi. It’s from trying to beef up their gross national product.(GNP) since the devastation of WWII. They have succeeded thanks partly to a hand up from the U. S. A.

So far, Danes are considered the happiest people in the world. They may choose lightly communal homes, which have large kitchens where folks share the cooking, and everyone takes at least one meal a day together if they want to. There’s always someone there and they make dear friends who become to them like family. Family and friends make people happy.

The Asian country of Bhutan is passing up striving for increased gross national product and going for gross national happiness (GNH) instead. When a business opportunity comes to the country the first thing the government asks is whether or not the steps they must take will further their goal of GNH or thwart it. This includes things like building dams and flooding communities just for material gain.

In America, we have a whole range from people walking around in Zombie fogs of self-pity to exuberant people (born extra happy).

Drs Meier and Minrith express a profound idea in the title of their book, Happiness is a Choice. Hannah Whitehall Smith echoes this idea, in hers, The Christian’s Secret to a Happy Life.

You may be wondering, however, what about money?

The thing about money is that if you have enough for the basic human needs described in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Human Needs you’re a great deal happier than if you don’t. Of course. Once those needs are met and you have some extra for comforts and fun things, then being rich doesn’t add a thing. That is unless like R. G. Le Tourneau you give away 90% of your income for God to use as he wishes. That’ll make you happy.

George Mueller is my hero. By 1875, he had lodged, fed, and educated over two thousand English children who would have otherwise been completely destitute and he did it without taking a salary and without fundraising. He prayed and taught the children to pray for all their needs and people obeyed God and brought the supply.

Here’s his take on happiness:

“I saw more clearly than ever that the first great primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord.

It’s miraculous how much that has helped me over the years as I have tried to practice it.

Nehemiah 8:10


2 Responses to “What Makes You Happy?”

  1. oldthingsrnew October 1, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

    Knowing who I am in Christ is what makes me happy.


  2. DiVoran Lites October 1, 2012 at 7:19 am #

    Do you know what makes you happy?


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