What I love about the book of Ecclesiastes is that it is very practical. It's a book about practical wisdom, much like Proverbs. Basically, the message of this book is that it's futile and empty to try to be happy in anything apart from God.
But there must be something more to happiness than just being a Christian, since just being a Christian doesn't automatically mean you're happy. So then, you might wonder: What does it really take for man to be happy?
My experience as a believer is that, even though I was saved at age 10, by the time I was in my early 40s I was truly miserable. Despite having attended Bible school and having acquired considerable knowledge of the Bible, I was completely and utterly miserable. God felt very, very far away—very distant and very disinterested in me.
Part of my testimony from when I was so miserable is that I can clearly and vividly remember my husband sitting across from me on numerous occasions and asking me, in all sincerity, "What would it take to make you happy?" And I would look helplessly at him and say, "I don't know. I don't know what I want. I have no idea what it would take to make me happy." I felt hopeless.
Because here's the thing: I had it all. I was a believer. I had a good husband who loved me. I had great kids, a beautiful house and enough money that I could choose to do whatever I wanted. I could work full-time, part-time, stay at home and be a full-time mom or even start my own business. And yet I had no idea what I wanted or what it would take to make me happy.
I know a lot of believers in this same place—they're not really happy. Because just being a Christian and knowing you're going to heaven doesn't automatically mean you're happy.
What's your happiness factor today? The winds of change are blowing. If your circumstances were to change for the worse, whether it concerned your wealth, your position, your health or your family—would you still be happy? Because if not, then maybe you need to reevaluate the basis of your notion of happiness..
You know how rollercoasters are—up one minute and down the next. Life, circumstances and even our emotions can be just like that. God wants your happiness factor to be a constant, not up and down like a rollercoaster!
To hear more about this portion of my testimony and learn some simple steps that can take you from miserable to satisfied, listen to What's Your Happiness Factor? on Preparing the Way with Diane Lake on the Charisma Podcast Network.
To hear my complete testimony, listen to The Power of Testimony and Breaking Free from Ungodly Mindsets on Preparing the Way.
Diane Lake is a writer, speaker and minister ordained with both Christian International and Generals International. Her articles are regularly featured on The Elijah List, as well as platforms like Charisma Magazine, Intercessors For America and others. She and her husband, Allen, co-founded Starfire Ministries with a vision to see the kingdom established beyond the four walls of the traditional church. They host a podcast with Charisma Podcast Network, and serve as church mountain, regional, and montana coordinators for the Reformation Prayer Network, and as media mountain leader/facilitators for C.I.'s Culture Influencers.
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