I used to have this old t-shirt that had a picture of a man with a huge grin on his face surfing/wake boarding and a massive shark behind him with its jaws wide open ready to eat him.... and the phrase on the shirt said “Don’t Worry... Be Happy”.  That man’s attitude to life was much more Biblical than of most members in the Church today.

I think Indian people are great worriers by nature.  Just think about your parents for a second:  most Indian parents worry about their mortgage payments, car payments, household expenses, children’s expenses, vacation expenses, they worry about their job security, about their promotion opportunities, they worry about their wife/husband, kids, family in India/North America, and they worry if they’re being Christ-like examples to their kids, if the Church is growing...there are very few things Indian parents don’t worry about, and fewer things they aren’t afraid to tell their kids that they worry about those things! 

And then there’s our generation we worry about our parents and all their worries, we worry about friends, grades, whether we’ll get into A university/college, then we worry about WHICH university/college we’ll get into, we worry if we’re living how God wants us to, if there are enough youth in our youth group, we worry about our jobs, our future careers, our future families, and then we worry about our future worries...
What does all this worry do for us in the end?  We hardly ever get solutions to our problems... instead we get high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease (which we Indian people are already pre-disposed to)... and then we worry about medical bills and prescription payments!

And what I find funny is that it’s God-fearing people that worry the most!!! We go to church on Sunday, read from Matthew 7:7-11, read about God’s provision for Israel in Exodus, Ecclesiastes 3:10-15, Psalm 111:5, Acts 14:17, I Timothy 6:17, Deuteronomy 21:1-13 and countless other verses about God’s provision for His people (and even for people that don’t call Him God)... and we still worry. 

I’ve spoken to people in the Church that are of one group that have literally given their lives to God (I can say I’m of that crowd), where we’ve thrown our hands up in the air in surrender to let Him take on our stresses, burdens, and worries (Psalm 55:22), and I’ve spoken to those that have said with their mouths, but haven’t believed in their hearts that God is the God of the impossible (Romans 10:9)- and it’s the first group that’s the happiest (I’m not just saying that because I’m one of them).  It’s the truest feeling of freedom you can ever have; it’s quite literally the feeling of having a burden lifted off your shoulders; knowing that you don’t have to find a way to solve the problem- that God’s already taken care of it.

If your parents are the kind of people to worry, especially in front of you... don’t live by their example- live by Jesus’.   At Gethsemane Jesus was perhaps at his most worry-some state but even then after his prayer he felt relieved because he knew the Father’s will and knowing that he became free from the very sorrow that caused him to sweat blood (Mark 16:32-42).  Not a single one of us will ever have to face a burden that extreme because of Jesus’ submission to God’s will, and for some reason we see our mortgage payments and school grades at the level Jesus saw his purpose.  We worry when we really have nothing to worry about; the only thing God is asking us to do is leave the car payment and future career in His hands- He’s not asking us to give our lives for the sin of the world, so for what reason are we worrying?

In that moment that you surrender you worries to Him, He really will take them from you so you don’t have to worry anymore; and if ever you want to worry about it again (not that you should) He’ll give it right back to you!
Not to mention, we must always be aware of how we present ourselves to the rest of the world.  You may only be one person but when you stand in front of someone else and claim to be a follower of Jesus- but remember you’re representing the ENTIRE church (because to that one person you are what ALL church people are)!  And if that person sees you worrying about things what reason are you giving them to follow Jesus?  We may tell them that God’s burden is light (Matthew 11:30) but your actions say that it’s harder to live with God’s burden than to live without it. 

And we must always try to see through God’s eyes.  In the short term you may have gotten a bad grade on your last exam, or you don’t seem to have the money to pay your recent credit card payment, but in the long term God has something already sorted out for that problem (if you’ve given Him your burdens and worries).  It’s as simple as saying “God, I didn’t do well on my last exam, but You know that I need an “A” in that class, and I trust that You are the God of the impossible- so I give this into Your hands, for Your will to be done.” 

And I further encourage you to read and understand Ecclesiastes 3:1-9, we have to understand God’s timing in solving our problems, understand that His will has a time and place and we have to learn to be patient so He can sort us out to fit into that purpose.

So I end this by daring you to be like the surfer on my old t-shirt, smiling your way through life even in the hardest circumstances because you know that God has it all taken care of and that’s He’s going to come through for you.