People often wonder if their individual happiness is important to our Heavenly Father. The answer is a resounding yes! Thanks to revelation from prophets, we know that God loves us each individually, even knowing us by name. He cares about our happiness and wants us to find eternal joy by living His gospel. His gospel is the plan outlined for us that will bring us the most joy and peace in this life and eternal joy in the life to come. Ancient prophets even testified of this in the Book of Mormon. The prophet Lehi taught his son, “Adam fell that man might be; and men are, that they might have joy” (2 Nephi 2:25).
A definition for “happiness” can be hard to pin down because it looks different for every person. Happiness can be characterized by contentment with life, excitement about the future, or even just peace about what is going on in your life and what is to come later on. The Book of Mormon teaches us that we cannot experience happiness without also experiencing sorrow (2 Nephi 2:11). The prophet Lehi teaches us that every choice has a consequence, whether good or bad. When we make the right choices, we experience happiness. When we sin, we experience sadness and sorrow (2 Nephi 2:27).
Thankfully, Jesus Christ provided us a way to overcome the sorrow that comes both with our sins and with the experience of being mortal. Jesus Christ atoned for us, meaning he suffered the punishment for all of our sins. Because of this sacrifice, we can choose to repent, which involves a sincere change of heart. This enables “all things [to] work together for [our] good” (D&C 105:40). When we turn our lives over to Jesus Christ and commit to follow Him, we can experience more happiness than we would without repentance.
Following Christ does not guarantee that nothing sorrowful will ever occur; sadness is a normal part of moral life. But by remembering the eternal nature of life, we can find joy even in our darkest times.