How to Be Happy

Inspiration MinistriesBy Inspiration Ministries2 Minutes

In 1785, when he was forty-five years old, James Boswell wrote The Life of Samuel Johnson. It was based on his years of friendship with Johnson, an important writer and figure in eighteenth-century England. Many scholars consider this the best biography of all time. It set a standard that writers have emulated for more than two hundred years.

Boswell, who was born in Scotland on this day in 1740, was pleased with the reaction to this book and with his other successes. But, as historian Daniel Boorstin concluded, this book did “not make him happy.” Boswell turned increasingly to alcohol and often was intoxicated. Although he achieved tremendous success, “he seemed never to realize the proportions of his achievement, and finally considered himself a failure.”

People often seek the kind of success that James Boswell attained. They dedicate themselves to riches, pleasures, or fame. But they do not realize that none of these things can bring true, lasting happiness.

The psalmist had realized that the key to happiness was to serve God. To focus on Him. To keep His Word. To trust Him completely. To praise Him “as long as I live” (NLT). He could be happy because God was his help.

Through life’s experiences, we learn to recognize that the world offers many escapes, but true, life-changing happiness comes only from God.

In your life, make a commitment to seek God. Serve Him with your time, talent, and treasure. Fill your mind with His Word. Trust Him to give you the kind of happiness the world cannot give.