“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God”—Matthew 5:8 NKJV In the Beatitudes, Jesus unlocked a major secret to living a happy life: A happy person will be a holy person. In the modern use of the word heart, we tend to associate it with our emotions. We will say, “My mind says one thing, but my heart says another.” We describe emotional people as “wearing their heart on their sleeve.” In other words, we tend to think of our mind as logical, while our heart is more emotional. But in the Bible, the heart is not only the center of our emotions, but also of our mind. This includes our thinking process. In Proverbs, we are told, “As [a person] thinks in his heart, so is he” (Proverbs 23:7 NKJV).

The heart is important in Scripture because it is the center of our personality and the center of our will and emotions. God wants us to have pure hearts. It is attainable; otherwise Jesus never would have promised it. What exactly is this purity, as in being “pure of heart”? It is a word that means “without hypocrisy,” or “single.” Later in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus says, “If thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil [or “double-visioned”], thy whole body shall be full of darkness” Matthew 6:22–23 (KJV). To be “single,” or pure, means to have a single-minded devotion to Jesus. As the Psalmist wrote, “Unite my heart to fear Your name” (Psalm 86:11 NKJV).

To be pure in heart is to seek to live a holy life, and that is the secret to happiness. If you want to be happy, seek to be holy. As Martyn Lloyd Jones said, “Seek for happiness and you will never find it. Seek righteousness and you will discover you are happy. It will be there without your knowing it, without your seeking it.”