Dr. Robert J. Waldinger, director of the Harvard Study of Adult Development, is the fourth leader of an incredible 75-year study of 724 men. Of these 724 men who entered this study shortly after World War II, 60 are still living, and each of them continues to participate in the annual research. These men came from all backgrounds, social statuses, and economic levels.
Each participant goes through a litany of tests, measuring their physical health, spiritual priorities, economic challenges, and much more. The goal of the ongoing study is to isolate the thing that brings happiness more than anything else.
Waldinger reports that the conclusion has never varied, through these 75 years. He says, “The clearest message that we get from this 75-year study is this: ‘Good relationships keep us happier and healthier. Period.’”
Happiness is all about connection with others. Maybe that explains this observation from the early church. “They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship” (Acts 2:42).
From its infancy, the church discovered that the secret sauce to happiness was to stay connected with fellow believers.
Recovery Step: If you aren’t connected to a local church, do something about it this Sunday.