Greetings and welcome again to Meditation Moments, and again God bless you and use your life for Him. We do pray that some little blessing shall come from this program.
Today we’re talking about one verse of scripture that has such a world in it that we couldn’t begin to exhaust it! God’s Word says, “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them” (John 13:17).—The little word happy and the little word do mean so much in this passage.
Some time ago I was reading an article by Mr. Glassen in Forbes magazine, and this was just an excerpt from it: “Everyone is after the same thing in life, and that is happiness. Just to have a good time seems to be the purpose of life to some people. Unfortunately, most of them blunder until their short lives are nearly over before they find out what a good time really is.
“At first, when children, we think that ‘a good time’ means lots of fun and not much work, to do as you like, and getting something for nothing. But many folks discover after a while that that is a very silly notion and leads to mischief, spankings and stomachaches.
“Eventually, after having plenty of troubles, folks learn that success and happiness does not mean grabbing everything we want, that happiness does not mean idleness and chocolate creams.”
Herbert Glassen says it takes a long time to find happiness. It takes a long time and you have to go about it in the right way to find it.”
Every real Christian knows this, and I certainly agree on one point, that happiness is one of the things which almost every human being wants. Of course, consecrated, deep saints of God don’t make a quest for happiness, but they find it just the same. I hope I can convince you of this, because happiness is to many lives only a holy grail, that if they miss finding it, they feel they’ve missed the supreme purpose in life!
But that isn’t the supreme purpose in life! There’s a little poem by Ella Wheeler Wilcox called “I’ve Lost the Road to Happiness,” and it goes something like this:
I’ve lost the road to happiness,
Does anyone know it, pray?
I was dwelling there
When the morn was fair,
But somehow I wandered away.
I saw rare treasure
And scenes of pleasure
And ran to pursue them, when lo,
I had lost the road to happiness
And knew not whither to go.
Now I take the liberty to paraphrase the next verse:
Have you lost the road to happiness?
Oh, I can lead you back.
Take the road marked obedience,
To the right, up God’s own track.
So where can you find real happiness? It’s found by obeying God! Strange to say, the mother of happiness is just plain old-fashioned obedience, and every man that was blessed under the ministry of Jesus Christ was blessed in the path of obedience.
Joy is always the aftermath of obedience. God’s Word says, “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” I want you to remember that verse: “If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them.” It’s true! A will yielded to God brings rest of spirit, a heart right with God brings joy, and a mind stayed on God brings peace.
Someone has said that perfect obedience would be perfect happiness if we had perfect confidence in the One we are obeying! Isn’t that a wonderful thought? And so true! It’s reasonable too, for if the heart is right with God and you’re walking in obedience to His Word, why, He can then fulfill to you all of His wonderful promises, and who could help but find happiness then?
Many people think that they are unhappy because of conditions and circumstances around them, but that isn’t it; it’s because of what’s wrong in the heart! When the heart is wrong, all is wrong. They are at war with themselves because they are out of harmony with God.
Christ did not teach that the quest for happiness should be abandoned, but that you must find the right way of finding it. Christ believed in, and taught happiness, but He made it very plain that there are wrong ways of pursuing it.
He knew every phase of human longing for happiness and that the wrong pursuit of it was one of the world’s greatest problems that we must solve. Jesus said, “I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man will take from you.” That’s John 16:22.
He said, “Ask and receive, that your joy may be full” (John 16:24). And He promised that one of the first fruits of the Spirit would be joy! (Galatians 5:22) There are so many scriptures along this line to prove that joy comes to a real Christian that we haven’t time to mention them all, far more than I could tell you about in such a short program as this.
But this kind of joy is entirely different from the gaiety that the world calls happiness. This strong confident message of happiness runs triumphantly all through the Word of God, so don’t think that when you become a Christian it’s some long-faced affair, all fenced in and hard and dark.
Always Christ set forth the fundamentals of happiness, and told us that we should have joy, and “ask and receive, that your joy may be full.” And He would reveal to the world that they are on the wrong path to happiness if they just strive for happiness as a goal in itself, because that’s just to chase a shadow and never catch the substance at all.
It’s not something from the outside that you can pour into the heart, but rather it springs up from within the heart as a God-given miracle resulting from yielding to the will of God, and putting the life utterly at God’s disposal. Is this an unthought-of way of happiness to you?
Does it seem unreal that you can find happiness by making Jesus Christ the master of your life in implicit obedience to His will? Tens of thousands of people are today testifying that they found happiness in obedience to the Lord Jesus Christ. He can do it for you. He wants to do it for you!
You’re dissatisfied, distraught, and frustrated? Why don’t you give God a chance at your heart? Before you again start up some wrong trail to find just another dead-end of dissatisfaction or frustration, why don’t you read God’s Word? You’ll find there what the will of God is for you.
You’ll find God’s way. Remember that Christ Himself, when He was here on earth, constantly set forth that there was no blessedness equal to the blessedness of obedience.
Is it strange that God can fully satisfy your soul? Oh, He can! He’s still on the throne and prayer changes things.