August 28, 2019
The Apostle Paul gives a seemingly impossible directive in Philippians 4:6 when he says, “Be anxious for nothing.” Our culture would define “anxious” as “anxiety” or “worry.” How can one eliminate all anxiety?
He precedes the idea by telling us to “rejoice in the Lord” and display a patient attitude. Knowing the joy of Jesus in our life and caring for other people ahead of ourselves – humility – crowds out a lot of potential anxiety and leaves little time for worry.
The verse continues by telling us to communicate with God – the gift of prayer. When we consider how helpful it is to talk with another person about our life challenges, it is obvious that talking to God, and listening to Him through His Word, would calm our anxious feelings.
Philippians 4:7 gives us a promise: “And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” We are offered peace beyond explanation. I have been pondering what that kind of peace includes:
*It must be what the young man, David, felt when he approached the giant, Goliath. He completely trusted his God and he honored Him.
*It must be what Job felt when family and possessions were taken away with no explanation and he worshipped God, saying, “The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.”
*It must be what Jesus’ fearful friends experienced when He appeared to them after His resurrection and said, “Peace be with you.”
*It is what I feel when I face challenges for which I have no answer and decisions I do not know how to make, but I give them to Jesus.
Peace is a gift from Creator God to His children who know Him through trust in Savior Jesus. It does not need to be explained, and often has no explanation, but it is real. Rejoicing in the Lord brings humility that rules over anxiety, resulting in peace.
Pastor Bill Ehmann