Heavenly Father desires that we find true, lasting happiness. Our happiness is the design of all the blessings He gives us—gospel teachings, commandments, priesthood ordinances, family relationships, prophets, temples, the beauties of creation, and even the opportunity to experience adversity. His plan for our salvation is often called “the great plan of happiness” (Alma 42:8). He sent His Beloved Son to carry out the Atonement so we can be happy in this life and receive a fulness of joy in the eternities.
Testifying of God's “eternal purposes,” the prophet Lehi taught, “Men are, that they might have joy” (2 Nephi 2:15, 25). Many people try to find happiness and fulfillment in activities that are contrary to the Lord's commandments. Ignoring God's plan for them, they reject the only source of real happiness. They give in to the devil, who “seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself” (2 Nephi 2:27). Eventually they learn the truth of Alma's warning to his son Corianton: “Wickedness never was happiness” (Alma 41:10).
Others seek only to have fun in life. With this as their main goal, they allow temporary pleasure to distract them from lasting happiness. They rob themselves of the enduring joys of spiritual growth, service, and hard work.
As we seek to be happy, we should remember that the only way to real happiness is to live the gospel. We will find peaceful, eternal happiness as we strive to keep the commandments, pray for strength, repent of our sins, participate in wholesome activities, and give meaningful service.
See also Missionary Work; Plan of Salvation; Service
—See True to the Faith (2004), 79-80
From a devotional address given at Brigham Young University on 19 September 1995. The principles of happiness that Nephi identified centuries ago work equally well today.
We can feel happiness every day in our lives through little things we do, and we are fully happy as we keep the commandments of a loving God.
The Savior, Jesus Christ, showed us the way to happiness and told us everything we need to do to be happy.
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