Devotional: Celebrate Him
In Philippians 4:4-9, we find a passage of Scripture that addresses an issue that we all encounter everyday in our culture and in our lives–anxiety. 2000 years ago, the church in Philippi dealt with the same challenge of anxiety that we face today. While in prison, Paul wrote to the Philippians about the direct antidote to anxiety and worry–peace.
Peace is the inner calmness and rest that only comes from God. It stands in direct opposition of all the negative possibilities and circumstances that anxiety desires to bring up. Anxiety and worry is wrong thinking (in the mind) and wrong feelings (in the heart) about circumstances, people, and things. Peace starts on the inside and counteracts everything on the outside, whereas anxiety comes from the outside-in, seeking to impose circumstances upon our inner peace.
Questions for Meditation
- Peace is an inner calmness that only comes from God and gives us freedom from all sorts of things. What happens when we try to pursue peace on our own and seek that peace from sources other than God?
- The apostle Paul wrote the epistle to the Philippians from inside a Roman jail cell, yet he still advocated to trust and rejoice in the Lord. After some honest and deep searching, what are some areas in your own life that make you feel like you are in prison? How can you bring God into those areas and situations? What are the ways you can rejoice in Him during those anxious moments?
- Anxiety is such a prevalent part of our society today both in the church and in the world. Why do we let anxiety into our lives so easily and allow the peace of God to slip away? How can we rest in His peace even when the circumstances of our lives are far from comfortable?
- As children of God, we are called for our gentleness to be evident to all. What does that mean to you? How can you incorporate that verse into your daily life both personally and professionally?
- When we rejoice in the Lord, He becomes bigger in our eyes and our problems become smaller in our hearts. What steps can you take today to make this a reality in your own life?
- The secret of peace is to celebrate God because of who He is and not what He is doing. Where do you find yourself today with that statement? How can you begin to change the way you celebrate God?