Joy or Happiness?

Sadly many people equate joy with happiness. As a result millions are seeking happiness and never find joy. The world offers happiness in pleasure, possessions, and power. We need look no further than Solomon to see that worldly pursuits do not bring happiness, much less joy.
Solomon began searching for happiness and contentment in worldly pleasures; Ecclesiastes 2:1-11. He found pleasure but it solved nothing, and called the pursuit vanity. He sought to stimulate himself with wine and women, houses and lands, gold and silver, only to conclude it was all done in vain.

At the end of his search, Solomon was a wealthy and still unhappy old man. He had spent a lifetime, many years away from God, searching for true happiness and fulfillment in everything the world had to offer. Then after searching deep within his soul he could say… “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter; Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.”
Millions of people are like Solomon in their search for happiness and contentment. As they look for answers here and there, they remain unhappy and miserable. They read all kinds of books, listen to every kind of psychiatrist, take all kinds of pills and never find what they are looking for. When we start substituting things of the world and our own mind-set to work things out, we are doomed to fail.

Solomon got it right in the end. “Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all.” It is in this that real joy can be found. Joy that is the result of the peace that can only be found in a life that is committed to God and Jesus Christ. If we could only comprehend the folly of trying to find happiness in all the things the world offers, we just might begin to find the joy that God offers in Jesus Christ, and wants us to have.

Jim Davis