Recipe for a Long and Happy Life
“EVERYONE wants to get older; but no one wants to be old.” So the saying goes. Many people approaching retirement age look forward to having more time and fewer responsibilities. Yet, they are afraid of becoming aimless and useless. They also fear isolation, unhappiness, and diminishing health.
What, then, is the secret of a happy life? Good friends and a loving family help to bring happiness to young and old alike. But what others contribute to an elderly person’s life is not all that counts. Even more important is what an older individual can do for others.
A long-term study of 423 elderly couples indicated that “making a contribution to the lives of other people may help to extend our own lives.” Stephanie Brown, who conducted the study, explains: “These findings suggest that it isn’t what we get from relationships that makes contact with others so beneficial; it’s what we give.” Such giving may include helping others with housework, taking care of children, running errands, providing transportation, or listening to someone who needs to talk.
About 2,000 years ago, Jesus Christ said: “There is more happiness in giving than there is in receiving.” (Acts 20:35) The recipe for a long and happy life does not consist of a big bank account or antiaging therapies and diets. Rather, it consists of staying active and giving of one’s time, energy, and strength to enrich the lives of others.
Nevertheless, it will take more than giving to save us from old age, illness, and death. Only God’s Kingdom will do away with such things. Under its rule, sickness will be gone and even “death will be no more.” (Revelation 21:3, 4; Isaiah 33:24) In fact, obedient humans will live forever in happiness on a paradise earth. (Luke 23:43) Jehovah’s Witnesses are glad to be able to give others this Bible-based recipe for a long and happy life.