Right now, I’d be willing to bet that you or someone you know is in a state of unrest of sorts. It may be as light as a headache, a missed appointment, or forgetting someone’s birthday. It could be as heavy as having lost a close friend to death, a son on drugs, or a divorce. No matter the pain, it is stealing your peace and you want to let it go, but can’t seem to do it. I hope these words will bless you as they have me.
The following is a passage from “The Message.” They come from Philippians 4:6-9.
“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.
Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.”
There are so many thoughts to take from this passage. Here are three:
1. Praying and praising both shape our worries. When worry begins to seep in, let us remember that prayer and praise puts worry in perspective. If we could just understand that this world is not about how comfortable we are, but about the praise-worthiness of God and our relationship with Him, we would begin to experience peace.
2. Christ displaces our worries. With Christ at the center of our thinking, He places worry outside the realm of reality and inside the realm of real peace.
3. God works it all together for good. God takes the things that we worry about and turns them into blessings and reasons to give Him praise.
God help me to trust you more and settle into You–the God of peace!