Thursday, October 8, 2015

Happiness Is...

Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin, with his sagacity and wit, was a man who thoroughly enjoyed trimming hecklers down to size. During the early days of the American Republic, he spoke many times on that great document, the Constitution of the United States.

After one stirring speech, an uncouth fellow rose and boldly walked a few paces toward the platform. "Aw, them words don't mean nothin' a-tall!"

Old Ben smiled benevolently at the questioner and quickly, blandly, replied, "My friend, the Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness. You have to catch it for yourself!"

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote about the elusiveness of happiness: "Happiness is like a butterfly; the more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it comes and softly sits on your shoulder."
Monarch butterfly Courtesy Google Images
Helen Keller Courtesy Google Images

Helen Keller, both blind and deaf from 18 months of age, was famous for many life-changing quotes. About happiness, she wrote, "Many persons have a wrong idea about what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose."

And English newspaper asked this question: "Who are the happiest people on earth?" The four prize-winning answers were

     (1) a craftsman or artist whistling over a job well done
     (2) a little child building sand castles
     (3) a mother, after a busy day, bathing her baby
     (4) a doctor who has finished a difficult and dangerous operation and saved a human life

You will notice that there are no millionaires among these and no kings or emperors. Riches and rank, no matter how the world strives for them, do not make happy lives. In fact, according to Ecclesiastes 2:26, it is God who give happiness to the man or woman, boy or girl who pleases Him.

To the man who pleases him, God gives wisdom, knowledge, and happiness.
Ecclesiastes 2:26 

Don't seek happiness; seek the Lord and do His bidding. Happiness is the by product.

What makes you happy?


  1. Hi AnnaLee,

    I found your blog as part of the WD October Platform Challenge. I wholeheartedly agree...seeking happiness may only reap human "earth" happiness, when what we really need to do is to seek the One who can grant us happiness!!

    Also read your post on sticking your neck out! LOVE it! Truly timeless advice and from the humble turtle nonetheless. Thank you for your wonderful insightful posts!!

    As a part of the happiness theme, I'd like to share a post from our homeschooling days:

    Wishing you great joy as you celebrate happiness that can only come from above!

    Karen Doll

  2. Thank you, Karen, for your encouraging comments. I remember a song from my youth written by Ira Stanphill that went, "Happiness is to know the Savior...Happiness is the Lord." How true it is! I will certainly check out your blog. If you subscribe to my blog (see from in sidebar), you will receive an email from me when I publish new posts.