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Here's how you can be Happy

Happiness is elusive.
People wish each other a happy new year — yet without giving it a second thought.
YOU can be happy — every year.
Here is how!


THIS is the time of year when everybody is wishing everybody else a "Happy New Year." But stop and look around you — at friends, relatives, business acquaintances and complete strangers. How many truly happy people do you see?

Pitifully few!

And what about you, personally? Are you filled with real happiness — the deep and all-encompassing kind that penetrates every activity and overrides every problem? The kind that makes each day a thrill to be alive? Are you going to live 1967 filled with this kind of happiness?

You CAN — and you should!


Why People are Unhappy

Have you ever wondered why deep and lasting happiness seems to be so difficult for man to attain — why, after 6000 years of human experience, the search for personal satisfaction, contentment and peace of mind is still such a frustrating and hopeless struggle for so many millions?

There is a reason!

People are unhappy because they are breaking the laws which govern and regulate happiness. Most do not even know that such laws exist — and fewer still know the source of them.

Visitors to the three Ambassador College campuses are constantly amazed that our students beam with such radiant happiness. They just can't figure it out.

Yet there is a very definite reason why these students are happy. They have learned that there are certain principles which govern happiness. And they are eagerly striving to put these principles into practice in their personal, daily lives.

The source of these rules and principles is, believe it or not, the Bible!

God has given man an Instruction Book which explains how to operate the marvelous mechanism of the human mind and body. This Instruction Book — the Bible — reveals to man how he can live a life bubbling and sparkling with true joy and lasting happiness.

Man, however, exercising the freedom of choice which God has allowed him, has rejected God's sure way to happiness. And more than that, as if attempting to prove God wrong, has sought happiness by stubbornly going in the exact opposite direction from that which will bring happiness!

If God says, "Do this — it will make you happy," man obstinately refuses to do it. And if God says, "Don't do this, it will bring you suffering and misery," man will insist on doing it!

And just look at the results! What an unending stream of heartache, misery and woe!

But you can be different. You can be happy!

In the Bible, God reveals at least seven basic principles telling you how. No gimmicks, no hocus-pocus, no magic formulas. Just practical, workable, down-to-earth rules of conduct which you can begin to use in your life today, tomorrow and the days after that. Properly applied, these principles are guaranteed to bring true happiness. Let's see what they are.


Happiness is Giving

The very cornerstone of all true happiness is an attitude of outgoing affection, love and concern for others. It is an attitude of giving. Jesus said, "To give is happier than to GET" (Acts 20:35, Moffat).

But human nature doesn't see it that way. It wants to GET — to take, to grasp, to seize for the self.

Our advertising media constantly appeal to this human weakness. Happiness is getting a certain name brand watch or a certain model car, they tell us.

And millions believe it! Polls show that the average American and Briton believes that if he could somehow get about a thirty percent increase in his income, he would be truly happy!

So labor strikes to get more money and benefits for less work. Management schemes to get a top price for inferior products and slipshod service.

Our air, food and water are polluted because man lusts to get greedy profits by unscrupulous shortcuts without caring about the effects these methods have on his fellowman. Our agriculture is becoming cursed because men force the ground in order to get more from the soil.

Now look at ourselves:

Our bodies are sick, malfunctioning and dissipated because we have tried to stimulate, arouse, excite and titillate our senses in a frantic effort to GET more of different thrills, sensations and pleasures from these, senses than they were meant to experience. We glut our stomachs with highly seasoned but nutritionally raped foods and drink; we fill our lungs with cancer-inducing smoke; we stuff our veins with tranquilizers, drugs, medicines and dope; and we burn the candle at both ends — in promiscuous sex, trips on LSD, drunken debauchery and a thousand other sins and excesses.

Why? To get all the kicks we possibly can out of life.

Our minds — and those of our children — are filled with mental garbage because someone is willing to peddle pornography, obscene films and degenerate music just to get their hands on a few more inflated dollars or pounds — and because Joe and Jane Q. Public want to get a cheap, shallow amusement thrill or a vicarious sex thrill from wallowing in this kind of "entertainment."

Our homes are filled with knockdown, drag-out family arguments because husband and wife want to get as much as they can without ever so much as a thought about giving to the mate.

Our land is filled with crime because people want to get material goods and pleasures so desperately that they are willing to kill, steal, rape, plunder and loot in order to obtain the object of their lusts.

Cities, counties and states bitterly compete with one another to get water, natural resources, industry, conventions, tourists, military bases and government contracts away from one another.

Ambitious leaders of political parties, extremist movements and rabble-rousing organizations of all kinds try to GET power, territory and prestige. The result? Riots and civil commotion or, on the international level, war.

Every misery and woe this world has is caused by man's inordinate desire to GET. Satan has used this selfish pull as one of his prime tools in deceiving the whole world (Rev. 12:9)

Man's greed is so great that, unless God intervened, it would cause man to blast himself off this planet (Matt. 24:22) — and that within the next decade!

But thank God, Jesus Christ — the One Who said, "To give is happier than to get" — is going to intervene. He is going to establish a world-ruling government based on the platform of giving. And He is going to FORCE those under Him to live in harmony with this platform so that everyone can be happy.


Why Not Live God's Way Now?

God wants man to enjoy every pleasure and possession that is good for him. He says, through John, "I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health" (III John 2). God wants man to enjoy good health, an abundance of material possessions, wholesome sports, stimulating cultural events, relaxing social occasions and interesting hobbies.

Such material blessings can add tremendously to true happiness. That is why God wants to give them to man. But these things cannot, by themselves, bring happiness. Happiness comes from obedience to the Law of God — the Ten Commandments. Suffering comes from disobedience. Suffering is the absence or loss of that happiness that God's Law gives.

Material blessings add to happiness only when rightly used — with a giving, sharing attitude and with the aim of helping man achieve the purpose for which he was put on this earth.

When wrongly used — with an inward, selfward, unsharing, getting attitude — material things bring only emptiness, misery, frustration and despair. That is why you see so many miserable people today — even among those who have wealth and possessions.

God has made it so that man cannot possess both material blessings and real happiness unless he is first willing and desirous of sharing these blessings with others in the way God intends. Until God forces him to, man will not do this.

But you — whoever, whatever and wherever you are — can begin to live your life according to God's happy giving way right now.

It will not be easy. Your human nature will resist every step of the way. It will try to convince you that happiness is getting. But with the help of God, you can overcome this downward pull.

As a starter, give your employer an honest day's work. Or if you are an employer, give your employees a fair wage and your customers a decent product or service. Give to your husband, wife or family the time and effort necessary to fulfill your responsibilities to them. Give to others in little things — a smile, a bit of inspiration, a word of encouragement, a little time, a kind word, a right example to someone who needs it.

And give to God, too. Give Him the worship and adoration which He deserves. Give Him the time in prayer and Bible study — yes, and tithes and offerings, too — which are justly due Him. Not out of a motive of getting something in return — though God will more than reward your efforts — but out of a sincere desire to give yourself completely to the One Who gives everything to you.

This is the way to begin applying the first great principle of happiness. Happiness is giving.

Try it. It works!


Obey God's Law

The key to happiness is a willing, wholehearted obedience to God's living law of love — the Ten Commandments.

The first four of these commandments tell you how to express your love to God; the last six tell you how to love your fellowman. Giving love to others by obeying these commandments brings happiness. This is why David, a man after God's own heart, exclaimed: "Happy are they that are upright in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord. Happy are they that keep His testimonies, that seek Him with the whole heart" (Ps. 119:1-2, Jewish translation).

Another Psalm tells us: "Happy is the man that bath not walked in the counsel of the wicked, nor stood in the way of sinners, nor sat in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord; and in His law doth he meditate day and night . . . And in whatsoever he doeth he shall prosper" (Ps. 1:1-3, Jewish translation).

These verses are quoted from the Jewish translation which renders the Hebrew word ashere as "happy." The King James version sometimes translates ashere as "blessed." The New Testament Greek word makarios has the same meaning.

Turn now to the New Testament. Here we read, "Whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty [the Ten Commandments], and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a DOER of the work, this man shall be happy [Greek, makarios] in his deed" (James 1:25).

And then in the very last chapter of the Bible, Christ Himself says, "Behold, I come quickly: HAPPY [Greek, makarios] is he that keepeth the 'sayings of the prophecy of this book. . . HAPPY [Greek, makarios] are they that do his commandments" (Rev. 22:7, 14).

How clear and plain the entire Bible is — Old and New Testament alike — that obedience to God's Law brings happiness!

Yet how many people — yes, even professing Christians — believe it? Most will vehemently argue that if you obey the Ten Commandments, the Law of Love, you are under a "curse." How absurd when entire chapters and books of the Bible are devoted to telling us of the tremendous blessings which obedience to God's Law brings.

Small wonder so many today — including a lot of religious people — are so frustrated, miserable and unhappy. They aren't obeying God's Law. Are you?

Unless and until you actively begin to obey all ten of God's Commandments, in the spirit as well as in the letter, you will not — you cannot — experience true happiness.

If you have not yet received our free booklet on The Ten Commandments, write for it immediately.