Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, 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 mind in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4: 6 – 7
This is my verse, my signature verse, and it has always brought such comfort and assurance. I have always been one to worry and to get overly anxious, but saying this verse over and over to myself has calmed my spirit so many times through the years.
The words “the peace of God which transcends all understanding“ just speaks to my soul and quiets any turmoil I may be feeling. By praying for His grace and strength, I am relinquishing all my cares and placing my confidence in Him. Rather than trusting in my own power to deal with a situation, and with the most grateful heart that I can do so, I am calling upon God to help me with whatever concern I may have. Just by reminding myself of the strength I can find in Him, by going to Him in prayer and then by feeling His presence, I receive such a calmness and peace.
I know it seems to defy human logic and explanation, and it’s most certainly one of the divine gifts of His Spirit in us. And what a gift it is! By placing my fears in His hands, I am trusting in Him to give me the perspective I need and the wisdom and guidance to deal with whatever challenge I face. I know I will be under His watchful care and can rest my troubled heart and soul. And how I need His peace and presence during these times of uncertainty.
It’s so easy to become obsessed with our worries. We often let our circumstances cloud our vision and we build our concerns into something beyond what they actually are. They can often take away our energy, our time, our contentment, our joy, and make us feel less secure and life much more uncertain.
I recently read some interesting statistics on the average person’s anxiety: “40% of the things we worry about will never happen; 30% are about things in the past that we can’t change; 12% are based on criticism from others (which is probably untrue anyway); 10% of the things we worry about deal with our health (which stress doesn’t help); and 8% are about real problems that we face and can actually fix.”
How much contentment and peace of mind we miss out on with all our worries. God wants peace to make up the fabric of who we are, and He wants to surround us with His loving presence every day, but especially during the anxious times. He gives rest for our hearts and our minds. May we choose to believe in Him and in His promises.
Our most gracious and loving God, we come to you with grateful, humble hearts that we can place all our worries and concerns with you. Thank you for your presence with us, for your grace to get us through the difficult times, for the peace your love brings, and for the strength we find in you. Thank you for the blessings of life. Amen