Christian and happy? Do these two words fit comfortably together? Is our Christian life a burden or a pleasure? Is our quiet time with the Lord a duty or a delight? The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life was first written by Hannah Whitall Smith as monthly instalments for an American magazine. Hannah was brought up as a Quaker, and became the feisty wife of a preacher. By the time she wrote The Christian's Secret of a Happy Life she had already lost three children. Her life was not easy, with her husband being involved in a sexual scandal and eventually losing his faith. So, Christian and happy? An alternative title for this book could have been The Christian's Secret of a Trusting Life.
How often, Hannah asks, do we bring our burdens to the Lord, as He told us to, only to take them home with us again? There are some wonderful and challenging chapters in this book, which Hannah revised throughout her life, as she came to see that the truth is in the Bible, not in our feelings. Fact, faith and feelings come in that order. As Hannah points out several times, feelings come last. The teaching in this book is firmly Scripture based, as Hannah insists that there is more to the Christian life than simply passing through the gate of salvation. There is a journey ahead for us, where every step we take should be consecrated to bring us closer and closer to God, day by day, and year by year.