How do you live a life that makes God happy? The idea of reading all 1,189 chapters of the Bible to find the answer to that question can seem overwhelming.

But, what if just by reading three short verses, you could know what makes God happy “in every way?”

We’re praying this so that you can live lives that are worthy of the Lord and pleasing to him in every way: by producing fruit in every good work and growing in the knowledge of God; by being strengthened through his glorious might so that you endure everything and have patience; and by giving thanks with joy to the Father.

Colossians 1:10-12

This verse outlines 4 ways we can make God happy: producing fruit in doing good works, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened by him, and giving thanks.

Doing good

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.

James 1:27 NLT

God really appreciates it when we go out and do good things for the people around us! There are tons of ways to do good works in our community, especially during the summer. A couple of ways to do good include volunteering at your local E-Sports location and organizing a PB&J Sandwich-Making Night with your friends to feed some homeless people in your city’s downtown area.

Getting to know God better

And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. [19] May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Ephesians 3:18-19 NLT

God wants us to know and understand who he is, so that we can know and understand how much he loves us. Growing in the knowledge of God may sound like a long and hard process, but it doesn’t have to be. You could decide to start reading one chapter of the Bible a day. Doing this with a friend is a good way to help you stick with it.

Another great way to grow your knowledge is to find a community of people who believe in God and can help you grow spiritually. Visit one of six Bay Area Christian Church locations to find Bible-based sermons and friends who can help you grow in your knowledge of God.

Get strong

For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13 NLT

God is happy when we grow stronger as a result of his strength. When I was a junior in high school, I played in basketball camp in Los Angeles. As it turned out, one of my teammates that week would end up playing in the NBA. He was unstoppable on the court, and as his teammate, I felt unstoppable too. When we realize how incredibly strong God is, we can gain strength from his power, because it is unlimited.

Thank God!

I will offer You my grateful heart, for I am Your unique creation, filled with wonder and awe. You have approached even the smallest details with excellence; Your works are wonderful; I carry this knowledge deep within my soul.

Psalm 139:14 VOICE

“Thank you” is one of the greatest phrases to hear. We typically enjoy being appreciated, and so does God. He loves it when we are genuinely grateful for what he has done and is doing in our lives. Whether it’s for a grade you didn’t deserve in Physics, a slice of pizza that you’ll scarf down, or simply another day and the opportunity to talk to him, take a few seconds to thank God for what you have. Not only does thankfulness make God happy, gratitude also can have powerful effects on our own happiness levels. Who knew that small two words could go such a long way!

Take some time to reflect on what ways you love God and what ways you can love him more and make a decision to act on one of those this week!

Further study