Sunday, December 1, 2013

Don't Worry, Be Happy

There's a song called Don't Worry Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin which, aside from being the anthem of every stoner ever, is also the motto that God wants all of his children to follow. It's a simple fact that contrary to popular belief, God does in fact want us to be happy in this life. Hard to believe at times isn't it? Your car payment is late, you don't have the funds to pay for it, and you just found out that you have some sort of super rare form of larynx cancer... Okay, so maybe that's a bit extreme, but you get the idea. In life, we're constantly facing some looming problem or another. Others build up amid the constant swarm of annoyances that we face as human beings and someone dares write a song titled Don't Worry Be Happy?

The sad truth, or rather, the joyful truth is that God has actually commanded us to "Be of good cheer." In fact, the word "Gospel" literally means: The Good News. I've also noticed that those who have the Gospel in their lives are inexplicably happier than those around them who do not. As a missionary, I've been able to experience this 'joy for no reason' as well. 

My companions and I would stumble through the front door at the end of a long day, exhausted as could be. We'd be disappointed because appointments fell through, people cursed us and at us, investigators refuse to progress, etc. There was always a tsunami of worries that we had to deal with. Yet, I noticed that I was happy and the more that I thought about it, the more I realized that I was pretty much happy for no reason. What reason did I have to be happy? In one day, all of our teaching appointments fell through, I got charged by a pit-bull, random guys swore at us and told us to go to hell, our dinner fell through, and to finish it all off, my bike tire popped. Yet, at the end of the day, I was still at peace with myself because I had given my all for God. 

Contrast this with the lengths that people go to for personal happiness through material wealth or otherwise. Billions of dollars are spent every year on chocolates, toys, and mind altering drugs to make one happy. People indulge in every little fantasy and dream they could possibly have, as if the new iPhone 4SG PS4 or a fleet of porches could bring lasting happiness. We invest in material things with the subliminal hopes that they'll make us happy and perhaps they do, But the happiness that a new Kawasaki R3 brings in only temporary. (Because the engine tends to wear out after a good 15,000 miles) 

For me, it's a question on priorities and what's really going to make you happy in life that brings... well... happiness. To focus more on what's going to bring the happiness that lasts throughout this life and into the eternities. Bullet bikes come and go, but things like family and marriage can last lifetimes. God only expects us to obey his commandments and not to worry about the rest. We can put the troubles that we face in his hands and then forget about them. Then as long as we hold out strong until the very end, we will be guaranteed happiness in this life and the life to come. 

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