By Greg Laurie
Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! . . . Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.
I think we all should take a cue from the Australians, who have a great expression: “No worries, mate!” That’s actually theologically correct.
Worry isn’t productive. In fact, worry is a failure to trust God. It’s interesting that the word worry comes from an old German term that means “to strangle.” That’s what worry does: it chokes you. It’s been said that worry is the advanced interest you pay on troubles that seldom come.
You might be thinking, “It’s easy for you to say.”
Let’s consider who said, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! . . . Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:4, 6 NKJV). The apostle Paul wrote those words under adverse circumstances. He wanted to preach the gospel in Rome, but he was a prisoner there instead. He didn’t know what his future held. He might be acquitted. He might be beheaded. He knew nothing about his future. But he gave us some of the most inspiring words found in the pages of Scripture.
Paul wasn’t in some ivory tower, spinning off impractical theories. He was incarcerated. Yet he was able to say, “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” That, by the way, is a command from God Himself. Rejoicing is a scriptural command; it is not a suggestion. To put it another way, not rejoicing is disobedience to God.
But we will justify worry and say, “No, it’s okay for me to worry, because I’m in a difficult situation.” Well, in many ways we all are—some more than others. But God, who is in control, loves you, cares about you, and is watching out for you. So rejoice in the Lord.
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