Lives that are void of worry and fear. We all want that kind of life. But how do we obtain it? We pray. We praise.
Phil 4:6…”Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.”
And then we experience one of the most powerful gifts given by our Heavenly Father…we experience His Peace. A peace that goes so far beyond our understanding. When our circumstances try to command us to fret and our situations beckon us to bow our knee and surrender to fear, there we find His Peace. And we can’t comprehend it. It stands as a shield before us and beside us and behind us. That peace sits upon our hearts and we can breathe and be and know that He is God and He is good. And at that moment, it is well with our souls.
Phil. 4:7…”Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
But then, life. The unraveling begins again. The news you wish would never fall upon your ears. The heartbreak that you wish would cease. The announcements full of disappointment. The disbelief of what has become of the world around you. And that peace seems absent, your mind less than guarded and you feel vulnerable to the lies that stand before you.
What changed? Where are those “it is well” moments? Where is the perfect peace like a river that we love to sing about? Where did the shift happen? I will tell you this…God did not change. His peace did not cease because of His doing. The promise is there and it is ours for the taking.
I believe the shift always begins with us. We locked eyes with fear for a little too long and now our faith is weakened. We lent an ear to doubt and worry. We listened to the lies being sung over us and compromised them in our hearts as truth. We lost focus on the Giver of the gift. We have become unfixed. Our focus has slowly shifted.
Phil 4:8,9…”And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. And the God of peace will be with you.”
I feed what I’m focused on, or better yet, I feed what I’m fixed on. When I allow my thoughts to be fixed on every ugly thing put before me on a day-to-day basis, I will feed myself full of anxiety and fear. And, not only do I feed myself the wrong things; I forfeit the best thing. Bottom line…when I choose to worry instead of pray, I forfeit the peace of God over my life. Ouch. Lord, forgive me.
No, you and I can’t change the circumstances before us and we can’t change the series of events that will unfold around us, but we can choose where we will fix our focus. I can choose to fix my faith upon His word and every promise that He has for me and my family. I can choose to fix my thoughts on His goodness; a goodness that is so tangible I can almost breathe it in.
So fix your focus. Lock your eyes on Jesus. Set your gaze on things above. With an unwavering faith, refuse to be discouraged by the temporary circumstance, the fleeting moment.
And before you know it…
Here comes that beautiful promise….
In walks the “It is Well” moment….
The rushing rivers of perfect peace…
And the God of peace will be with you…