For a few weeks this summer we are looking at what Jesus taught us about the true secrets to living a happy life.

In the Beatitudes (Matthew 5), Jesus lays out eight standards for Christian living. You might call these the “8 Secrets of a Happy Life.” Everyone wants to be happy. But not everyone is eager to follow Jesus’ plan on how to find happiness. We need to pray and ask the Lord to help us live out these eight characteristics in our lives. The Beatitudes show us the way to be blessed and happy. They are also eight great things we need to pray become real in our own lives.

The second beatitude states, “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” I’m paraphrasing here, but Jesus is telling us that if we want to be happy then we need to be “saddened by sin and quick to confess it.” Sin is not a popular thought for many. People want to believe that they are free to do whatever they want. Everything is right in one’s own eyes. Standards are subjective. God’s Word is optional or unnecessary, many would say. Obedience to God is not on the radar of many people. If you believe in Scripture and the consequences of disobeying God, you are old fashioned and legalistic.

Jesus reminds us that it is really just the opposite. True freedom and forgiveness are found in confessing our sins to Him and living to obey Him. His ways and will for our lives are good and perfect. He wants to protect us from unnecessary pain and evil. He wants to lead us in the right way.

May we all pray for ourselves and those near to us. May we pray that we will always be saddened by sin, quick to confess it, eager to obey God’s Word, and more determined than ever to turn from disobedience. Jesus says this is how to live a happy life.