“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Today's prayer focus
- Is there something causing you anxiety today? Bring those fears to God.
- Do you have personal prayer requests today? Be honest and pray specifically.
- Do you need God's peace today? Ask him for gospel peace and rest as you go through your day.
“Peace for Troubled Hearts”
My grandmother was a professional worrier. She would fret and speculate until she lived in a completely distorted reality, and as a result there was very little joy in her life. I can see this proclivity in myself; to let my imagination run wild until I no longer know what’s true and what isn’t.
What does worry produce? Fear.
The most oft repeated command in Scripture: Do not fear.
Why? For I am with you.
In Philippians, Paul provides the ultimate anti-anxiety regimen: “In every situation, by prayer and petition … present your requests to God.” This is not to say that we give God a laundry list of petty requests, or that he’ll make life easy for us—quite the contrary, in fact. But one of the reasons we pray is for our own sanctification; to fight off the temptation to be fearful, which threatens to distort our reality and rob us of joy.
God is not offended by our weakness when we come to Him. The Psalms are filled with very vulnerable prayers about fear, despair, and loneliness. Our surest safeguard against being enslaved by dangerous emotional extremes is the truth of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We can come to God with all our troubles, and he will be faithful to fill our minds with truth as we commune with him.
This verse ends with a promise: “The peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” The peace of God “transcends understanding.” Even when terrible circumstances seem to justify anxiety, God’s peace overrules and becomes a guardian for our vulnerable hearts and minds. May you be filled with peace today as you lay your worries and fears at the feet of our Almighty God.
Katie is the administrator and communications director for Lake Baldwin Church in Orlando, FL. She is also a writer, musician, avid reader, craft guru, wife, and mother. Katie loves intelligent novels, a good cup of tea, and those complicated board games that only your nerdy friends like.