How to Find True Happiness
Newscaster: 2020 has been a rough year to say the least, and it’s clearly taking a toll on Americans. A new study is concluding that Americans are more unhappy today than they have been in nearly 50 years. The COVID response tracking study finding just 14% of American adults say that they’re very happy. That’s down from 31% who said the same in 2018, and marking the lowest number since 1972. Much of the survey was conducted before the death of George Floyd that launched nationwide protests, which have likely added to the feelings of stress and loneliness already lingering due to the coronavirus.
Brother Johnny Martin: True happiness—it’s something we all want. But who will find it? That’s our topic today, here on The Message.
Brother Johnny: Hello, everybody! I’m Brother Johnny Martin.
Brother Joe Velasquez: And I’m Brother Joe Velasquez.
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Brother Johnny Martin
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Johnny: And we’re here in our studios in the San Francisco Bay area. You know, Brother Joe and dear friends, 2020 was a rough year for a lot of people. It was unlike any other year in our lifetime. Disasters, civil unrest, and the COVID-19 pandemic hit many people very hard. Many lost their lives or have loved ones who did. Many lost their jobs and struggled with financial hardships. Many suffer from food insecurity or hunger. Others were homeless. More and more people felt isolated, anxious, and depressed. Well, nobody wants to feel that way. They want to feel happy. They want to know how to find true happiness.
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HOW TO FIND TRUE HAPPINESS
“I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil.”
Brother Johnny: However, Brother Joe, can people find true happiness in this world?
Brother Joe: Well, let us read the answer stated here in the Holy Bible. In Job 3:24 to 26, this is what is stated here:
For sighing has become my daily food; my groans pour out like water. What I feared has come upon me; what I dreaded has happened to me. I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil.”
[Job 3:24-26 New International Version]
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Brother Joe Velasquez
Minister of the Gospel
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, the servant of God speaking in this passage is Job. What did he say about his life? Well, he said, “I have no peace, no quietness; I have no rest, but only turmoil.” Now, Job is not the only person who had this experience. This has happened to many people, no matter who they are or whatever their status may be in society is today. There are times when what people don’t want to happen is what actually happens. Now, what is it that people do not want to experience? Of course, sadness and the absence of peace.
Now isn’t it true that all kinds of people in the world experience such things? Why is that so? Well because everything that can bring people sadness and turmoil, such as diseases, calamities, and death, they’re all here in this world.
Why can’t people avoid distress?
Brother Johnny: You know, Brother Joe, at this point in our study our friends might be wondering, you know, “Why is that the case, why is it like that?” Why is that, despite the exceptional qualities that people would have, well, they can’t avoid experiencing these things?
Brother Joe: Well, we can read the answer stated here, Brother Johnny, in Isaiah 8:22, and this is what is stated:
And they shall look to the earth, and behold trouble and darkness, weakness and distress, and a mist following them, and they cannot fly away from their distress.
[Isaiah 8:22 Douay-Rheims Bible]
Brother Joe: Now if you notice here, dear viewers, the Bible shows us that trouble and darkness were appointed to take place on Earth. The verse states that people cannot fly away from their distress, or they cannot avoid it.
Brother Johnny: Now, Brother Joe, our viewers might be asking, “Are troubles and wickedness the only things that bring people sadness and turmoil?”
Brother Joe: Well let’s find out the answer here, Brother Johnny, in Job 5:7, and this is what we can read:
For man to misery is born, And the sparks go high to fly.
[Job 5:7 Young’s Literal Translation]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, troubles and wickedness are not the only things that bring people sadness and turmoil. What else will people surely experience in the world? Well, the Bible says, “For man to misery is born.” Now, there are so many people on Earth who are not only living in misery or hardship but also are dying because of it. Others may not be having financial difficulties because they’re rich, but they’re also miserable because of the various problems that they’re experiencing.
Brother Johnny: So, Brother Joe, people know that they’re experiencing troubles in this world. So what are other people asking, what are they asking because of the troubles that they’re going through in this world?
Brother Joe: Well, let’s read here the testimony of the Holy Bible, in Psalm 6:3, this is what is recorded:
My soul is in deep anguish. How long, LORD, how long?
[Psalm 6:3 New International Version]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, what do others ask because of the troubles that they experience in this world? Well, they ask God, when will it end, this condition of people? Now as this servant of God declared, “My soul is in deep anguish. How long, LORD, how long?”
Now, what do all of these things prove—that the true happiness that people seek, it’s not to be found in this world. Happiness here is temporary and it has an end. Happiness in society today just doesn’t last.
Is happiness real?
Brother Johnny: So, dear viewers, in the midst of this difficult world, have you ever found yourself wondering: “What does it mean to be happy? Is happiness real? Is there no hope for people to be happy? Is finding true happiness impossible? Is there no chance for people to find true happiness?” Well, dear friends, that’s what we’re going to talk about next here on The Message. We’ll be right back.
Dennis Prager (Author & Radio Talk Show Host, PragerU): Why are so many young people unhappy?
To cite just one example, Reuters reported in 2019 that suicidal thinking, severe depression and rates of self-injury among U.S. college students more than doubled over less than a decade.
And unhappiness is hardly confined to Americans. As the social commentator Kay Hymowitz recently wrote, “Germans are lonely, the bon vivant French are lonely, and even the Scandinavians are lonely. The British Prime Minister recently appointed a ‘Minister of Loneliness.’”
People have more money, better health, better housing, more education, and live longer than at any time in history, but people—especially the young—are unhappier than at any time since data began to be collected.
Brother Johnny: Hello, everybody. Welcome back to The Message.
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HOW TO FIND TRUE HAPPINESS
Brother Johnny: In the first part of our program today, we learned that people cannot find true happiness in this world, because there is turmoil and no peace in this life. No matter what exceptional qualities a person may have, he can’t avoid experiencing these things, because trouble, darkness are in this world, and people cannot fly away from or avoid their distress. People [also] experience misery or hardship, but does that mean that there is no hope for people to be happy? Brother Joe, is there no possible way for people to find happiness?
Brother Joe: Well, that’s a very good question, Brother Johnny and the Bible can provide us an answer. Here in John 16:20 and 22, allow me to read here, and this is what is stated:
Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. So with you: Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy.
[John 16:20, 22 New International Version]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, is there a possibility for people to find true happiness? Well, the answer is yes.
According to our Lord Jesus Christ, “You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy. …Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice,…” But what kind of happiness or joy did our Lord Jesus Christ promise those who will be blessed on Judgment Day, which is when He returns? He said, “…no one will take away your joy.” So it’s a happiness that no one can take away.
Brother Johnny: Now Brother Joe, you know, some people might say, “Well I know here while we’re living here on Earth, there are moments when people are going to feel happy.” You know, I have a moment right now that someone might say, “I’m feeling pretty good right now.” Well, the happiness that people have here, well it doesn’t really last, you know.
That’s something, everybody, we need to realize the happiness that people have here in this world—it’s fleeting, it’s short-lived, really doesn’t last. Well, is the happiness that you’re reading about there in the verse of the Bible, is that the same as the happiness that people have here in this world?
Brother Joe: Let’s find out what the Bible says, Brother Johnny, here in Isaiah 65:17-19, and this is what we can read:
“See, I will create new heavens and a new earth. The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever in what I will create, for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight and its people a joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people; the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more.
[Isaiah 65:17-19 New International Version]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, is that happiness that our Lord Jesus Christ will bring with Him, the same kind of short-lived and fleeting joy and happiness that the people of this world experience? Well, the answer is no. Why are we certain that the happiness that will be experienced by those who will be blessed on Judgement Day is true, and everlasting? Well, because those who receive this will “rejoice forever.” Where is this joy to be found? Well, it’s not in this world. It’s there in the new heaven and the earth created by God, and that is the Holy City.
Finding Happiness in God
Brother Joe: What is the quality of life there in the Holy City? Well, the Bible states, “The former things will not be remembered, nor will they come to mind. …the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard in it no more.”
Hence, dear viewers, what should people strive to do in order to find that true happiness? Well, they should strive to reach the Holy City, in order for them to receive the happiness that will last forever.
Brother Johnny: Well, Brother Joe, this is going to be the next question: “According to the Bible, who are surely going to receive that true happiness, who will have that true happiness?
Brother Joe: Well let us find out, Brother Johnny, here in the book of Psalms, 37:37, and this is what the Bible teaches us:
But the good man—what a different story! For the good man—the blameless, the upright, the man of peace—he has a wonderful future ahead of him. For him there is a happy ending.
[Psalm 37:37 The Living Bible]
Brother Joe: Now did you notice here, dear viewers, the Bible attests that the person who has a happy ending is the good or righteous person. What are his qualities? Well, the verse clearly states here that he is blameless, he is upright, and the man of peace.
Brother Johnny: Now, dear friends, you might be wondering right now, “Why does the Bible say that those who are upright are blameless, or without sin? Brother Joe, does this mean that they have not sinned?
Brother Joe: Let us read here, Brother Johnny, the testimony of the Holy Bible in Romans, five and one, and this is what we can read:
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,
[Romans 5:1 New King James Version]
Brother Joe: Brother Johnny, the upright have also committed sin. But although the upright also have sinned, they have been justified. They are the ones that have a happy ending. Why is that so? What is the reason that the Bible says that the upright have a happy ending? Well because they are the ones who have peace with God.
Brother Johnny: That verse you read, Brother Joe, mentioned peace with God—peace with God, dear viewers. Well, what does the Bible refer to as peace with God?
Brother Joe: Well, the Bible again answers us here in Romans 8:1. This is what is stated:
There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
[Romans 8:1 New King James Version]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, the peace with God that the Bible refers to is the absence of condemnation. According to the Apostle Paul, who are those for whom there is now no condemnation? They are those who are in Christ Jesus.
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HOW TO FIND TRUE HAPPINESS
Brother Joe: Thus, even now, those who are in our Lord Jesus Christ are certain of salvation and of a happy ending.
Brother Johnny: You know, dear friends, at this point in our study, some might be thinking, well, “Well then I’m going to be okay.” They might be thinking, “Well, “I’m already in Christ, therefore, I’m going to have that peace that the Bible is speaking of.”
But, dear friends, we’ve got to ask this question: “Who are really the people who are in our Lord Jesus Christ? Is it just those who say they’ve accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as their Lord and personal Savior? Is it those who just say that they believe or have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ?” According to the Bible, who are really in Christ? Brother Joe, to what do they belong?
Brother Joe: Well, let’s turn to the pages of the Holy Bible and find out. In Matthew 16:18, this is what we can read:
And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, the powers of death shall not prevail against it.
[Matthew 16:18 Revised Standard Version]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, those who are in Christ and who belong to Him are those whom He recognizes as His.
Brother Joe: And those whom Christ recognizes as His own are the members of the Church, which He built.
Brother Johnny: Now when it comes to the Church that our Lord Jesus Christ built, does the Bible show us what the name is of that church? Does the Bible tell us what the name is of the Church that our Lord Jesus Christ built?
Brother Joe: Well, Brother Johnny, in fact, it does. In fact, we can clearly read [the] name of that church mentioned here in the Holy Bible, in Acts 20:28, and this is what is stated:
Take heed therefore to yourselves and to all the flock over which the Holy Spirit has appointed you overseers, to feed the church of Christ which he has purchased with His blood.
[Acts 20:28 George Lamsa Translation]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, the name of that Church is so clearly mentioned here—it is the Church Of Christ. Therefore, the Holy Scriptures attest that we, members of the Church Of Christ, are the ones who will find true happiness because we are certain of receiving salvation and eternal life come Judgment Day. Hence, if there’s anything that we should love, cherish, and protect with everything within our power—it’s our membership in the true Church Of Christ. Nothing else can come close to the great benefit that we will gain from our God-given election, which is why we should never exchange it for any material thing in this world.
That’s why we also encourage people to join the true Church Of Christ. We’re inviting everyone to continue learning more about the beliefs and practices of this Church. And you can do that by checking out our websites, for example: iglesianicristo.net and incmedia.org and also pasugo.com.ph, which is the online magazine of the Iglesia Ni Cristo.
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Brother Joe: All of this is there for everyone, all day, every day.
Brother Johnny: Now you know, friends, someone may say right now, “Okay, let’s say that I join the Church Of Christ (Iglesia Ni Cristo), to have true happiness on Judgment Day. But wait a minute, aren’t we still here in the world? And what about my hopes, what about my dreams in life? Well, am I simply just going to forget about all of them and just abandon them?” Dear friends, what does God instruct the people to do so that their hopes and dreams in life will be fulfilled? Brother Joe, what’s the answer of the Bible?
Brother Joe: Well, the Bible tells us the answer here in Psalms 37:4-7. Allow me to read, and this is what stated:
Seek your happiness in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desire. Give yourself to the LORD; trust in him and he will help you; he will make your righteousness shine like the noonday sun. Be patient and wait for the LORD to act; don’t be worried about those who prosper or those who succeed in their evil plans.
[Psalm 37:4-7 Good News Bible]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers, how can our heart’s desires or goals in life be fulfilled? Well, the Bible states, ”Seek your happiness in the LORD, and he will give you your heart’s desire.” So, it is in God that we will find true happiness, not in this world.
So what should we notice then? We should always include God in our lives. Maintain a good relationship with Him in order for our heart’s desires to be fulfilled. Now, who can expect God’s help for his dreams to be realized? Well, the Bible’s answer is, “Give yourself to the LORD; trust in him and he will help you;…”
But how can the one who gives himself to the Lord and who trusts in Him, be recognized? Well, the Bible states, “Be patient”. Why should one be patient? Because he who gives himself to the Lord hopes that no matter what happens, God will not forsake him.
Brother Johnny: Brother Joe, excuse me, allow me to jump in real quick, okay. Now, what if somebody hasn’t received yet that help, that help promised by God? Is he going to now feel discouraged, weakened, lose hope? Should that be the reaction?
Brother Joe: Of course not, Brother Johnny. He shouldn’t become discouraged, he shouldn’t lose hope, he shouldn’t fall into despair. You know, in fact, the Bible tells us here, “wait for the Lord to act”. So we can’t hurry or rush God. We can’t push God to act. Because God is the one who knows when is the right time to give our requests. Now should we be worried or envious if there are people who are prospering because of their evil or wicked ways? Well, the commandment of the Bible is, “don’t be worried about those who prosper or those who succeed in their evil plans.”
Brother Johnny: Now Brother Joe, why not? Some might say, “Why shouldn’t I be envious of those who are doing what is evil, those who are doing what is wrong in the eyes of God, and they’re prospering?” Why not be envious of them, why not imitate them? What’s going to happen to them?
Brother Joe: Well let’s find out the answer here, Brother Johnny, in the Book of Psalms 37: 16, 20 and 22. This is what it says:
The little that a good person owns is worth more than the wealth of all the wicked, because the LORD will take away the strength of the wicked, but protect those who are good. The LORD takes care of those who obey him, and the land will be theirs forever. They will not suffer when times are bad; they will have enough in time of famine. But the wicked will die; the enemies of the LORD will vanish like wild flowers; they will disappear like smoke. Those who are blessed by the LORD will possess the land, but those who are cursed by him, will be driven out.
[Psalm 37:16-20, 22 Good News Bible]
Brother Joe: Dear viewers in these verses that we have read, the great differences between the good and the wicked are clearly shown. So what does the Bible say here about the wicked?
It says that the strength of the wicked will be taken away by the Lord, and that the wicked will die. On the other hand, what does the Bible say about the good? It says that the good will be protected by the Lord, that the obedient will be taken care of, and that they will not suffer when times are bad.
Brother Johnny: Now dear viewers, why does the Bible say that the obedient, those who are faithful even if times are bad, why does the Bible say they will not suffer?
Brother Joe: Let’s find out, Brother Johnny, here in the answer of the Holy Bible, in Psalm 37:25 and also 23 and 24. This is what we can read:
I am old now; I have lived a long time, but I have never seen good people abandoned by the LORD or their children begging for food. The LORD guides us in the way we should go and protects those who please him. If they fall, they will not stay down, because the LORD will help them up.
[Psalm 37:25, 23-24 Good News Bible]
Brother Joe: Did you notice here, dear viewers, what can God’s faithful servants expect from Him? Well, that He will not abandon them and also their children. But what will God do as proof that He will not abandon them? God will be their guide. He will protect them. But what if the trials that come into their life are very difficult? The Bible teaches us here, “If they fall, they will not stay down, because the LORD will help them up.”
Dear viewers, this is very true. Not only back then but even more so now. In fact, many members of the Church Of Christ have experienced that. Thus, no matter what happens, they continue to be steadfast in obeying the commandments of God.
Brother Johnny: You know Brother Joe, at this part of our study, there’s a promise of God recorded in the Scripture that would really be great if we would share that with everybody who’s joining us in this episode, this program today. You know, friends, what else is God’s promise if His servants remain obedient, or faithful to His commands? We’d like to read for everybody what it says here in Psalms 37:28:
for the LORD loves what is right and does not abandon his faithful people. He protects them forever, but the descendants of the wicked will be driven out.
[Psalm 37:28 Good News Bible]
Brother Johnny: Dear friends, as members of the Church Of Christ, we firmly believe that we are God’s nation in these last days. What is God’s promise to His people if we will continue doing what is right or obeying His commands? The Bible says here, the Lord loves what is right and does not abandon His faithful people. What else did the Bible show us here? The Bible said, “He protects them forever.”
That’s why God loves the Church so much and continues to bless and protect the Church in its entirety. So for all our fellow members of the Church Of Christ out there joining us today, brethren, let’s implore God to be merciful to all of us. So that happen what may, we will remain faithful in obeying His commandments, in order to be, for all of us to be counted among those who will be saved, those who receive true happiness and will dwell with God in the Holy City.
And for our dear friends who are not yet members of the Church Of Christ, dear friends, we care about you so much. We once again invite you, learn more about the Church of Christ by checking out our other life-changing content on incmedia.org.
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Brother Johnny: On behalf of all of us here at The Message, dear friends, we want to thank you so very much for joining us today in our study of God’s message written in the Bible. But before we go, we’d like to ask you, please join us for a short prayer.
Brother Joe: Dear God, most merciful and loving Father in Heaven, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts for this inspiring message that we have received today. It’s true that we encounter troubles, hardship, and sadness in this world. But we know and understand that there is a true happiness that You are preparing for all of us. A place where we will be free from all of the mysteries and trials of this world. And It is there in the Holy City, that you are setting aside and preparing for Your chosen ones.
Help us to understand, dear God, that this is a wonderful blessing that You are preparing for Your people, and allow us to be beneficiaries of Your promises that we will also be able to enter into the Holy City to receive the great blessing that You are reserving for Your faithful ones, that we might also see You there, dear God, and receive the salvation, and the eternal life, that we are all longing for.
Jesus Christ, our Lord, we call upon You. Help us, that we might be closer to our Father. And allow us to remain faithful to You and to our God at all times, upholding the truth service unto Him, even until the very end.
Father please always bless this program. Bless also all of our viewers who are watching. May they be enlightened by Your Holy Words that Your teachings will find a place in their hearts and in their minds, to encourage and strengthen them to seek out for Your Holy Truth, and to be members inside the Church Of Christ for the salvation of their souls.
Father in Heaven, unite us always with the spirit and love of the Church Administration. Guide at all times our dear Brother Eduardo Manalo, as he continues to lead and guide all of us onwards to our salvation.
It is our confidence, O God, that You have heard our prayers, You have forgiven us for any sins that we may have done. For we humbly beg all these things in the name of Your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.
Brother Johnny: Amen.