Don't Worry, Be Happy

by Stan Mitchell
girlpraying.jpg“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” (Philippians 4:6).
You probably remember reggae singer, Bobby McFerrin, who mindlessly repeated the advice: “Don’t worry, be happy.”
Many people think that’s what Paul is advising here, too. “Don’t be anxious about anything” is not, however, an Apostolic version of the good-natured Jamaican. Ignoring our problems is a little like lightly chilling the Antarctic; it has little effect on reality.
Please note that Paul is not saying: “Don’t worry, ignore reality.” He’s saying, “Don’t worry, pray.”
The distinction is not subtle!
On the one hand, you anesthetize yourself so completely that when life’s troubles sweep over you, you are brain dead. On the other hand, you hand life’s troubles over to God, who will bring his not inconsiderable power to bear on your behalf.
Christians don’t avoid reality; they face it with the help of God.
So, don’t worry, pray!

One Reply to “Don't Worry, Be Happy”

  1. From Winona, MS church of Christ: Used this one in the bulletin this week, Stan. Thanks for your good thoughts.

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