“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”
Philippians 4:4 (NIV)
Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961), an American, was a truly great twentieth century writer. In high school I read his magnificent novel, The Old Man and the Sea, written in 1952. At the time it was a relatively new novel.
The story line was the battle between an old man and the sea, in which he both lost and won the fight. Hemingway earned the Pulitzer Prize for the novel in 1952 and when he earned the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1954, this volume was referred to in the presentation of the prize.
So Hemingway was a world renowned individual in his chosen profession. He went through several marriages, went on African safaris for big game, fished the oceans, and seemed to live the good life. Yet he made a curious statement: “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.” The tragic shipwreck of his life came at his own hand using one of his various guns.
In life and in death, Hemingway was proof of his statement about intelligent people being unhappy.
Yet for all his unsuccessful pursuit of happiness, many intelligent people in every generation discover happiness. Martin Luther, who was a full time university professor, full time writer and a full time pastor, had a hilarious sense of humor and people loved to be with him. He was a truly happy man.