Websters partial definition of happiness is "luck-good fortune-pleasure-contenment." That may satisfy him, but his terms seem superficial, lacking in real depth and true understanding of genuine happiness.
Luck implies a game of chance, "the luck of the Irish." Granted were "lucky" if we have happiness, but in no way is it happiness per se.
Good fortune, he says, is "Success-prosperity-wealth." But happiness isn't related to "things". Financial success or wordly possesions so many people passionately crave, offer little happiness when they're gained. They are not the pot of gold we may think they are. Most of our true happiness comes from unexpected sources and from within. Happiness is not for sale. It can't be purchased with money or power.
Happiness is not the sensual satisfaction of pleasure. Drugs, alcohol and carnal desires may provide illusions of pleasure or happiness, but these unnatural states of mind and body are mirages, making happiness even more illusive. Pleasure never was, is not and never will be synonymous with true happiness, regardless of what some people say.
As to contentment, it may be pardonable to be contented with what we have, for a contended man in never poor, or un-happy, atleast, providing it doesnt trigger complacency.
H.W. Beecher says, "There is a sense in which a man looking at the present in the light of the future, and taking his whole being into account, may be contended with his lot; that is Christian contentment. But if a man has come to that point where he is so content that he says, 'I do not want to know any more, or do anymore, or be any more,' he is in a state in which he ought to be changed into a mummy!"
So much for Webster, and for his terms of what he thinks happiness is. To obtain happiness we need to be actively engaged in good causes. A lazy man is never very happy; a busy man is seldom miserable. Happiness is a product of active moral lives and when it comes, it comes without asking. If we pursue it, it becomes a will-o'-the-wisp. It's something like a beautiful bird--the more you chase it, the more it eludes you. Ignore it and it may return and happily settle in the palm of your hand.
It is impossible to perfect true happiness unless it is shared with others. Bulwer wisely said, "There is one way of attaining what we may term, if not utter, at least mortal happiness; it is by a sincere and unrelaxing activity for the happiness of others,"
And if we extend mortal happiness into everlasting happiness we must also believe in, and strive for, immortal goals, for without immortality, mortality would lose much of its meaning. Here today; gone tomoorow. There would be precious little to plan, work and hope for.
To gain happiness is not the prime purpose for living. The purpose is to build a character worthy of happiness. An act of goodness is an act of happiness, and no reward, after the fact, can compare with the peaceful feeling of the act itself. The happiest life, therefore, is the life which brings out our best.
When we understand and follow these principles, were on the road to true happiness, even though we were not seeking it. But not before.
Words of Encouragement:
My story continues:
In December of 2009 my brother Ben and his wife Kari decided to try and help me. They knew that I was still using meth, and that I needed help. They invited me to live with them for a while if I would promise to stop using meth and make a better life for myself. I wanted to change my life so I jumped on the offer. My brother lived in
. Living on the island was like paradise, a little piece of heaven on earth. We were members of the beach club which included a five mile stretch of a private beach. We had our own golf cart. We were right on the water with the best fishing, and wind surfing in Galveston, Texas ! A few months went by and I was feeling better and better about myself. I was able to start hearing that inner voice inside of me again saying things like, “You need to get back into church”, and “you need to prepare yourself to have a family”. This state of mind didn’t last long because I was not staying completely sober; I was still drinking and smoking occasionally. My brother and his wife decided to take a trip to Texas and I was left all alone. Although I was in paradise, once I was there alone I felt miserable. I just couldn’t stand being alone. I decided to drive into Hollywood, California to pick up my nephew Travis, so I would have someone there with me. As soon as I pulled into Houston my truck broke down. There I was broken down on the side of the road, frustrated, angry, lonely, and that was all it took. I called an old using buddy to come give me a ride. And there I go again on the merry go round of using meth. The vicious cycle of my addicted life style began again. Ben found out that I was using again and told me that I was no longer welcome to stay at their home. Houston
Once again I was back living at home with Mom and Dad. This time I changed my attitude and was able to work with my Dad at the family restaurant. We were even playing golf together quite regularly. It was on March 15th of 2010 when I felt impressed to ask my dad if he would like to play golf the following day. The next morning as we drove to the golf course it began to rain. The rain fell harder and harder, but we decided to go and have lunch in the club house anyway. We had lunch together and it was a very enjoyable time. I had no clue that this would be the last time that I would see my Dad alive!
The very next day my nephew Travis and I were all dressed up in our jeans, and boots getting ready to head out to the Houston livestock show and rodeo. We were walking out the door when my mom got the phone call. My father had collapsed on the 7th hole at the golf course. We jumped in the car and drove very fast to the hospital. We pulled into the parking lot at the same time as the ambulance. When I saw them pull my Dad out on the stretcher pumping his heart, I knew he wasn’t going to make it. My Dad passed away doing what he loved to do. He had made 5 pars and a birdie when his heart gave out on him on the 7th green. He used to joke around with me and say, “When I die just stuff me and prop me up in the pro shop!” Well, we didn’t have him stuffed and propped up in the pro shop, but we did put a golf ball in his pocket when we buried him. We buried him in the same cemetery that B.J. was buried in.
I was not prepared for the death of my father. I immediately turned to drugs and alcohol. I tried to smother my pain and sorrow by drinking, and using meth. Thank goodness that my brother Davis was there to help my mother. My mom decided that she wanted to close the restaurant and move to
to be with her mom. Once my mom was gone I was bouncing around from friend to friend with no real stability in my life whatsoever. Life was so terribly hard for me after I lost my Dad. I realize now that it was my own poor choices that made life so hard for me, almost everything I was going through was brought on because of my own poor choices. I continued to self destruct to the point that I was living on the streets with no where to go! I continued to make poor choices to the point that no one wanted anything to do with me. I was broke, homeless, and on the streets! I was miserable! One day I was riding with some guy I barely knew and he was in a stolen vehicle. We were pulled over and taken to Harris county jail. I did ten days and was released with three years of probation. Arkansas
I didn’t skip a beat, I went right back to using! I thought I could beat the system and keep on using, boy was I wrong. On October 29th 2010 I was arrested again for a dirty urine sample. The first three or four days of jail I was absolutely miserable. I was so ashamed of myself, and so disgusted with the way my life had turned out. After a few days of beating myself up I decided that I needed to use this time in jail to regain my sanity, and get back to myself again. I knew I needed to use my time in jail to prepare for sobriety in the free world. I begin to realize that I was exactly where God needed me to be so I could regain my ability to live a sober lifestyle. Before I was arrested I had lost my ability to live a sober life. I was trapped in the prison that I had created for myself. I was being held captive inside of the prison that I had created by choosing to live in addiction. I was spiritually weak and enslaved to drugs and alcohol. I begin to realize once gain that jail can actually be a great place to turn my life over to Christ. Jail can be a great place to begin the repentance process, and to exercise SPIRITUALLY. I begin to accept the fact that I needed help and that this time would allow me to heal and start a fresh relationship with my Father in heaven. Once I accepted the fact that God put me in jail so I could have time to heal and regain my spiritual strength, my time was so much easier. I was able to find peace even while I was locked in jail! I was actually happier living sober in jail than I was trapped in my addiction living in the free world!
Thank you so much for reading my blog. Please leave comments and share this with anyone you know that might benefit. God bless you!!!