Apparently, only 45 percent of people in the workforce are happy with their job. The Associated Press provides the details of a recent survey that turned up that result. It is unfortunate that more people are not happy at work. Maybe this explains the surly service that I so often get at retail stores and fast food places.
Gretchen Rubin studies happiness and runs something called The Happiness Project. Her material is worth reading. Here is a recent Wall Street Journal piece about her, and here is something Slate magazine ran.
We all want to be happy; our founding fathers even declared the pursuit of happiness to be as important as life and liberty. But I want to suggest that we can do better. There is something better than happiness to be found in life and on the job -- joy.
Happiness is an emotional state of being that comes and goes. Everyone's life includes a few unhappy moments -- a friend or relative gets sick or dies, a disaster strikes, serious problems come up -- you name it, these kinds of things occur in everyone's life at one point or another.
Joy, on the other hand, is more constant than happiness. Joy is not an emotion, it is a state of being that comes from having a relationship with Christ. Joy is meaningful even when things around you are sad. I have known many people who have suffered through illness or tragedy, yet remained joyful through it all. That doesn't mean they were inappropriately giddy, but it means they were able to maintain hope when others thought things were hopeless.
The Bible calls joy a "fruit of the Spirit" (Galatians 5:22). Whether you are at home or at work, look for joy, and when you find it, share it with others. If you do, I am willing to bet there would be more happiness all around for everyone.