Do you live in peace, or anxiety? When you are awake at night, do fearful thoughts of what the future holds cycle you down in ever increasing worry?
How can we live in peace in our spirits in a world filled with fearful, stressful and anxiety producing problems?
How can we live in peace with our neighbors during such division and frustration?
For me, I have found the answer in Jesus, the Prince of Peace. He said that in Him, we would have a peace that "passes all understanding."
But how does that work out practically? What steps does Jesus give that we can follow into living in peace, both within ourselves, and with our families and neighbors?
In my devotions this morning, Philippians 2:6-9 jumped out at me:
"Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through Christ Jesus."
First, whatever we are anxious about, we bring in prayer and requests to God, and we thank Him for all He has done, and is doing and will continue to do bring about good and salvation for the world, and to form us more and more into His likeness!
But secondly, and this isn't to be skipped, are the next verses that I have been meditating on for the last year. I was reminded of it by my dear sister, and it continues to bless and encourage me when so many things in life NOT worth meditating on threaten to destroy my peace in Jesus:
"Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.
The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do,
nd the God of peace will be with you."
As hard as it is to not meditate on bad reports, impure actions from others, lies, and ignoble things done around us, if we focus on these things instead of our our all-powerful God who remains triumphant in all things, (yes, even bad leadership!) we will only give in to increased anxiety and stress.
But if we place our hope firmly and unshakably on the joy set before us because of Jesus' work on the cross, we have reason to be joyful in all things, and the "Peace of God will guard our hearts and minds!"
May you live joyfully, hopefully and peace-filled this week as your focus on the victory and triumph of Jesus in all things!
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Halley Faville lives with her husband and children in their mountain home in Oregon.