Man is always searching for happiness and invariably looking in the wrong places. But God tells us where we can find happiness, the kind that doesn’t evaporate when the circumstances change, the kind that establishes a foundation in our lives that won’t be shaken even in hard (or unhappy) times. This kind of happiness is not light and frothy, blowing in and quickly disappearing. This is the bedrock happiness whose author is God. Notice how we find it from these verses below.
1. “Whoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he” (Proverbs 16:20). This is the starting point for all happiness (or blessedness). If we are not trusting in the Lord, we are trusting in something else. What could possibly be trustworthy like God? If we trust in ourselves, we are bound to find out quickly that we are finite. If we trust in circumstances, they will change. Only God is worthy of our complete trust. He is faithful. When we trust Him, we are happy in all circumstances.
2. “Happy is the man who finds wisdom” (Proverbs 3:13). Foolishness always eventually leads to ruin and misery, even if some may not get there immediately. God invites us to look for, search for, listen to, and pray for wisdom. This will bring happiness with it.
3. “Happy is the man who is always reverent” (Proverbs 28:14). When we reverence our holy God, we will treat others respectfully as a natural consequence. God blesses those who hallow His name, so we should consider how we speak to Him and about Him. We should also consider that we bear His name, so our lives should honor Him. This results in more happiness for us. When we live in a right relationship with our Maker, we are free to enjoy Him.
4. “Happy is the man whom God corrects” (Job 5:17). When the Holy Spirit convicts us of sin, we should rejoice because this is the kindness of God toward us. His correction demonstrates our relationship to Him as our loving Father. When we receive correction, we know we are being sanctified for our good and His glory. This should make us happy!
5. “He who has mercy on the poor, happy is he” (Proverbs 14:21). It is more blessed to give than to receive. As we have mercy on the little ones around us, the unfortunate, the grieving, the poor in spirit, we are reflecting our Father who has shown His mercy to us. This is how we are working out what He is working in us. And this is one more way that we can be a happy people in the Lord.