Path to happiness is out there if you look

Published 10:14 am Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happiness. Why is it so hard to find?

Could it be that we just don’t deserve it? Or, maybe, that most of us just aren’t supposed to enjoy our lives?

Or could it be that our pride, coupled with our values, won’t allow us to find it?

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Move your gaze from your newspaper or computer screen for a moment. Look at a nearby wall, the bigger the better. On that wall, search for and focus on the tiniest speck you can find.

How big is that speck in comparison to the wall? How many of these specks would it take to completely cover this wall? Thousands? Millions?

Now, consider this: That speck is your life on Earth. The wall is eternity.

Money, fame, popularity, security and acceptance are at the apex of the world’s definition of success. As an example, Marshall Mathers (Eminem) appears to have it all. Do his lyrics come across as positive and insightful? Do they add joy to your life?

Or do they breed hate?

When you listen to his “music” are you moved to do whatever you can to help others, consequently creating happiness in yourself along the way? Or do you feel empty, angry and agitated?

Mike Tyson once had all of the criteria we would consider necessary for total happiness. Does he still have it? Did he ever really have it? Will Charlie Sheen be given extra years on Earth simply because he is a celebrity?

Even if he was given those extra years, his life, like yours and mine, is still a tiny speck.

We all know people who cheat, lie and steal from others in their own misguided pursuit of happiness. Some of these people are considered prominent citizens in our community. Admit it, you are cordial to these people even though you despise yourself for bowing to them.

Why? Because, in your mind, that person with ill-gotten gain has influence. You’re afraid to make enemies with someone who has resources. You have a happiness problem because you won’t stand up for your beliefs.

But it’s OK to publicly make fun of the pauper because he can do absolutely nothing to advance your cause. He’s worthless…. until he hits the lottery, receives a settlement or falls into an inheritance. Then, bam, his views suddenly matter.

The secret to happiness is simple.

Drop your selfishness and help others, especially those society deems worthless. Stop worrying. Treat everyone with respect, especially those who can do absolutely nothing for you in return.

Realize that despite what the world says is important, showing empathy for others and investing in human lives is the greatest pursuit in this world.

And never deceive yourself by believing that you are more important than anybody else.

Most importantly, read your Bible. It maps out the only true route to happiness through Jesus Christ. He made your speck and He controls the wall of eternity.

One day, you’ll be happy to report to Him that you used your life to help others, just as He intended.

Despite your present circumstances, you’ll be happy until that day comes.

This life is nothing more than a dot in our overall existence, but it will forever determine our fate outside of this world.

Billy Bruce is a freelance writer who lives in Pedro. He can be contacted at