Don’t Worry-Be Happy

Don’t Worry-Be Happy was a popular song many years ago by the singer-Bobby McFerrin. The song was simple with a jubilant melody and repetitive lyrics. It conveyed the message that everything would work out alright. The society that we live in promotes self-reliance under the guise of pre-planning the future for your life. By always remaining one step ahead of what may happen tomorrow, you will not be caught by surprise. The pressures of completing the tasks for today; thinking about the duties for tomorrow; and wondering about the future, has left us in a perpetual state of worry and unhappiness.

What is the resolution to alleviating the never-ending pressures of life? Believe it or not, the Written Word actually concurs with the concept of Don’t Worry-Be Happy. In Matthew 6:34, we are admonished to “…don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.” (NLT) The step to a worry free life is to pray when you awaken, and give your daily activities to God. Do not be surprised if your plans do not coincide with God’s plans. Smile, while humbly accepting His divine intervention. He has your today, and your tomorrows from beginning to end. Go ahead, don’t worry- smile, and be happy. Sonya Johnson-Ruiz

Watch the Who, What, and Where

I adopted my cat when she was 6 months old. She was raised in an inside environment until we relocated to Texas. Her first tree climbing experience was traumatic for both of us. For about an hour, she sat on on branch and loudly meowed in distress. I called my husband at work and informed him of the situation, hoping that he would come to the rescue. He immediately told me that she would figure it out. I began to call her name and slowly she came down the tree grabbing onto the branches with her claws. I nearly fainted, the day she brought me a baby bird as a present. My husband did come home from work to remedy the situation by rescuing the bird. Although, my cat was raised inside all of her life, when she was exposed to the outside environment, her innate qualities surfaced as a skillful hunter as she fearlessly climbed trees and chased birds.

The Bible tells us that we were born in sin and shaped in iniquity. Even though we were created in the image of God, our natural desire (innate) leans toward sin. The individuals we associate with; the television programs that we watch; the sensual music we listen to; and the places we visit have a direct impact on satisfying our desires for worldly pleasures. It is a conscious decision to choose situations that compromise our Christian-Christ like values. The choices that we make will either develop our sinful nature or sinless nature. Being aware and overcoming our natural desire is only accomplished by praying and watching the who, what, and where situations in our lives. Once we acknowledge our innate sinful desires, we canavoid the choices that we would normally make.

It is only through Christ that we can choose the who, what, and where, that will develop our spiritual skillfulness.

Preparing for Eternity

img_20171024_102927_1631541433674.jpgWe now live in a society filled with darkness. The peak of racial tensions, heinous crimes, and hatred have resurfaced in a manner that will discourage the most devout Christian. However, prior to Jesus ascending to heaven, He left a message of encouragement for all believers. John 14:1-3 tells us: Let not your heart be troubled you believe in God believe also in me. In my father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you unto myself; that where I am there you may be also.

Regardless of the circumstances that surround us, when we ask for God’s unconditional love, we are able to view life through spiritual eyes. Prepare for eternity by loving others, and focusing on the promise of a perfect life where love will be present forever.

Unable to Move Forward?

There are many reasons that prevent individuals from moving forward.

1. Fear

2. Bitterness/Anger

3. Lack of knowledge

4. Unwilling to learn new options

5. Refusal to forgive others or yourself

Negative thoughts and emotions will never produce positive outcomes. Seek God through prayer, and the guidance of a professional therapist for immediate help. It is possible to change at any stage in your life. Moving forward provides the freedom to accomplish the impossible.