“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
This message is from the heart of a Father who sees how many of His kids are filled with the anxieties of life. He longs to bring us into that place of perfect peace. He longs for His children to see His heart for them and His desire to see them resting in His love.
Are you longing for some peace? Do you find yourself experiencing anxiety or stress about different things through the week? There is a peace which is beyond our human understanding and which keeps us anchored in the Father’s love even in the most trying of times. God wants to fill us with this peace but there are steps we need to take:
1) Make a conscious decision that you will not allow yourself to worry or be anxious. It is easy to start worrying about the situations we are faced with, but the Lord is calling us to a better way. Paul says “do not be anxious about anything”, which shows us that anxiety is something that can be controlled or stopped. It also shows us that we can decide not to allow anxiety a place in any situation. When you find yourself faced with an unexpected issue and your heart begins to sink, say “no”, and choose instead to turn to God. Paul wrote to the Philippian church that they needed to 2) bring everything to God in prayer. This sounds easy but it is quite hard to do because most of us are so used to finding our own solutions for problems. In other words, it has become easier to trust in our own strength rather than in the Lord! However, we can learn to turn to God in everything by simply praying about everything that concerns us. God’s heart is for our welfare and His thoughts towards us are always good (Jeremiah 29:11), which means that none of the ‘bad’ things that hit our lives are from Him. If we knew this without any doubt, then we would be able to lift up our eyes to Him and say “Help!” knowing that He has the perfect solution and will work things around for our ultimate good. (Romans 8:28). We are expected to “make our requests known” to God, to express our hearts’ desires and leave them with Him. We can trust Him to give us the best. He is trustworthy!
3) Thankfulness in advance. Paul tells the Philippian church to accompany their petitions with thankfulness. This is faith in action! It is that absolute “knowing” that God has heard your prayer and is coming through for you. “Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.” (Mark 11:24). If we believed, we would have no problem expressing our thanks to God for His answers to our prayers.
Friend, God is calling you to walk in the peace that Jesus has made possible, the heavenly peace which cannot be explained in the light of human logic or reasoning. It is the peace that comes from that absolute communion and connection with the Prince of Peace. His peace fills and surrounds us when we stay in touch with Him always, turning to Him in every circumstance, and maintaining a grateful heart for everything He does. That peace is yours today as you decide to step into a closer walk and trust Him in everything.
If you have been experiencing a time of uncertainty, anxiety or fear, know that God wants to turn things around and bring you into a place of peace. He is calling you to trust Him and give everything over to Him. He is saying to you “My child, do not be anxious. I have got it all covered”. (He has!) Weeping may remain for a night but joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5). It is the dawning of your morning!
Take a few moments to pray and invite the Prince of Peace to take over every situation in your life and to fill you with His peace. Let it become a part of your life to turn to Him in every circumstance and to thank Him in advance for the breakthrough that is yours. He loves you and wants the best for you, and that is what you will begin to see as you choose to trust the Lord, knowing that He knows best!
I pray today that all fear and anxiety will be broken from your life and that you will be filled with the peace that passes all understanding. I pray that you will walk in thankfulness and in victory always because Abba has such great plans for you. May His perfect shalom fill you now, in Jesus’ mighty name, amen.
Minoli Haththotuwa, 25 February 2014