In the second paragraph of the Declaration of Independence it says the following:

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

The very last phrase of that sentence says, “the pursuit of happiness.” I am convinced that everyone that has ever been alive or is currently living has felt the desire and longing to be happy in their lives. I am also convinced that many in life can experience the happiness that they desire to have.

However, they often find that the happiness found is temporary and based upon what it is they do in life. Are you longing to be happy? Are you tired of pursuing something that seems to be impossible to obtain? What is the secret. In the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon writes in verses one to three of the second chapter,

“I said in mine heart, go to now, I will prove thee with mirth, therefore enjoy pleasure: and, behold, this also is vanity. I said of laughter, It is mad: and of mirth, What doeth it? I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life.”

In verse one he says that he will “prove thee with mirth” or amusement and social merriment and that he will “enjoy pleasure” Only he finds it all at the end of the day to be fruitless, empty, and wanting more. We too, like Solomon, often discover that the moments of pleasure we are pursuing in a hope to experience happiness always seem to leave us empty and wanting more.

What is the answer to this dilemma that we face? Can we find and obtain a lifetime of happiness? Is it really possible? The answer is yes; it is possible to obtain a lifetime of happiness. The dilemma we face is difficult to navigate through at times, because we often find ourselves pursuing pleasure rather than pursuing happiness.

If you will take the time to read through the entire second chapter of Ecclesiastes, you will find that Solomon expresses the emptiness he discovered as he pursued the pleasure of entertainment. The pleasure of work was not enough for Solomon. The gaining of possessions was not enough for him either. Money and power was not enough. Education was not enough. What he found was that pleasure only produces a very temporary happiness and ends with feelings of emptiness, irritation, an intense desire to have more, and an opposition to reason. It led him to a place where he says in verse seventeen that he “hated life” due to the emptiness of pleasure.

If we are to be able to experience a lifetime of happiness and it isn’t found by our pursuit of pleasure, how can we ever hope to find true happiness? It must be done God’s way. Make sure to check out next month’s Chronicle article as we conclude with the explanation on how we can obtain a lifetime of true lasting happiness in this life that will not leave you longing for more.


by Pastor Aaron Smith