Was Jesus the First to say “Don’t Worry, Be Happy?”

(Luke 12:22-31)

smiley faceHow many times have you heard the expression, “Don’t worry, be happy?” There have been songs singing about it and it has appeared on Tee shirts, bumper stickers and so. It’s easy to say and just rolls off the tongue. But who was the first to say it? I don’t really know, but I reckon Jesus said something similar that could have been the basis for this saying. Here are five reasons why you can say, “Don’t worry, be happy” with Christ Jesus.

Have no anxiety about anything

OK. so it doesn’t quite have the same marketing appeal as “Don’t worry, be happy,” but given that Jesus said these words there is some more authority to his saying than a bit of marketing spin. Not only does he say the words, he backs it up with reasons why we should all feel this way and live a life without anxiety. Here are a few good reasons.

Reason 1 – Food and Drink

In verse 29 he says, “And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be of anxious mind.” Jesus promises his people who follow him that he will provide for their physical needs. He knows that we need to eat and drink and as his children he will provide. If you have children of your own you will understand this. At times you may have gone without for the sake of feeding your children. Well the Lord does this and more. As he said, “Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds!” (Verse 24)

Reason 2 – Clothes that you wear

Just as we need food and drink to live we also need clothes to cover our bodies. Warm clothing for winters and light clothing for summer. Jesus promises that he will provide for this need as well. He said, “Consider the lilies, how they grow; they neither toil nor spin; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass which is alive in the field today and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O men of little faith!” (Verse 27-28)

God provides such beauty and variation as he clothes the fields and forests. He promises also that he will provide the clothing we need to meet our needs as well.

Jesus also makes an interesting point here. He says, “For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing.” (Verse 23) Note that last bit. The body is of more value than clothing. If you consider some of the things done and said for the sake of fashion today you would think it was the other way around! Such statements as “The clothes make the man,” are a clear indication that this world has got it all back to front. When they worry more about clothes than the person wearing them, they are wrong.

But as Jesus shows us, when it comes to clothes we do not need to be anxious. He will provide all of our needs.

Reason 3 – Protection

As we have seen above, the Lord protects us from physical suffering for lack of want. He also protects us from emotional and spiritual suffering. He says, “Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, “I will never fail you nor forsake you.” Hence we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid; what can man do to me?”” (Hebrews 13:5-6)

We do not need to be anxious or fearful for the Lord is our helper and protector. What is the worst that man can do to you? Kill you? Then what? If you are in Christ when you die you will be with the Lord and will have the promise of eternal life. There is nothing man can do to take that away from you while you remain obedient to the Lord.

Reason 4 – He accepts you as you are

You do not have to be special in any way whatsoever. The Lord looks at you as you are and you are accepted. You don’t need wealth, learning, education, handsome or beautiful, you don’t need fancy clothes, sporting prowess or anything else to belong to Jesus. All you need is faith and you are accepted.

Paul made the point that, “For if the readiness is there, it is acceptable according to what a man has, not according to what he has not.” (2 Corinthians 8:12) So if you desire to live a godly life and follow the Lord, you are accepted as you are, not based on what you don’t have but what you do have.

Reason 5 – Salvation from sin

In Jesus you are saved from your sins and have the promise of eternal life. Jesus gave himself as the perfect offering for us so that we could be set free from our sin. What greater gift could anyone give than to give their life for another? And if Jesus did that for us, what do we need to worry or be anxious about? And what does worry achieve anyway? As he also said, “And which of you by being anxious can add a cubit to his span of life? If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?” (Verses 25-26)

Worry never extended any persons life by one second. And if we cannot do that, as Jesus says, why worry about anything? Especially as He is the Author of life AND can extend your life into eternity. Doesn’t it just make sense then to listen to what Jesus has to say because life is more important than stuff.

Maybe he didn’t say, “Don’t worry, be happy,” but what the Lord has done for us and offers us certainly more than fulfils this statement. Look to the Lord then and be confident, not filled with anxiety.

(Picture sourced from stock.xchng uploaded by jaylopez)

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2 Replies to “Was Jesus the First to say “Don’t Worry, Be Happy?””

  1. To be completely honest, I have not read your blog in a while as I thought it was getting a little dull, but the last few posts are very impressive so I suppose I will factor you back in to my everyday bloglist.

    1. Thank you for your comment. I have been trying something a little different lately, and there is more to come as I am rebuilding the entire site, so watch this space.

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