July 8, 2019
Prayer > Worry
I was having lunch at Panera the other day with a dear friend and the conversation turned to prayer. He said, “We make prayer more difficult than it needs to be.” I told him that I agreed with his insight and, in fact, the Bible undergirds his experience.
NLT Philippians 4:6 Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done.
Paul is telling the Philippians how to develop a strong prayer life. To me, this is prayer unpacked.
It is interesting that worry is listed first. We have to deal with the trust issue right away. In my life, prayer must be greater than worry. Notice what we are to pray about- everything- this excludes nothing and nobody. Many think they’ll just bother God with the big stuff. Well, everything is small stuff to God, the Maker of the Heavens and Earth. If we combine telling God all we need with thanking Him throughout the day, a dynamic prayer life will follow.
NLT Philippians 4:7 If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
Paul begins the next verse with, “If you do this….” When we see a conditional in the scriptures, we need to pause and consider the promise that’s attached. In this case, God’s peace is being offered to us in abundance. So, I need to seriously consider this.
Don’t worry + Pray + Share with God my needs + Be thankful = God’s Peace
What the apostle Paul wants developed in the Philippians is more of God- more of His peace, more of His grace and His mercy. He is not filling their day with more tasks to do. If I had a greater measure of God’s peace in my life, would I better handle the problems and challenges that daily come my way? Or, am I like so many anxious, restless people that have a weak prayer life? As Pastor Rick Warren said, “The more you pray the less you worry.”
NIV 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.
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