We must release anxiety and fear to receive God’s peace in our lives.
~ Lisa Blair
The conditions leading to peace are explained in Philippians 4:6. God’s peace is achieved through prayer, supplication, and thanksgiving. The peace is associated with releasing anxiety and fear, handing them over to God, who will then replace the void caused by releasing anxiety and fear with His peace. You cannot receive His peace if you are consumed with anxiety and fear. His peace is conditional. You must release the cause for anxiety and fear to receive the Lord’s peace. He promises peace to those who believe (have faith) and overcome being fettered by anxiety and fear. Further, the release rests on one’s ability to shift from what we see with our eyes (those things around us)* to what we know in our hearts to be true. God ensures peace to those who welcome Him into our hearts.
“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.” ~ Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV
“for we walk by faith, not by sight.” 2 Corinthians 5:7 ESV
Associated Scripture References:
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 ESV
“And Jesus said to him, “‘If you can’! All things are possible for one who believes.” Mark 9:23 ESV
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 ESV
We are covered in the Blood. God gives us the strength to withstand life’s circumstances.
When bad things happen, the devastation is short-lived. It is a short time because as Christians we acknowledge that God’s time is not our time, and our thousand years is but a moment to God. So, as we walk through devastation we must keep our eye on the Lord, not the circumstances or the length of time we have been walking through it, but on the Lord. The Trinity is our Salvation.
God gives us the strength to withstand the circumstances. Jesus gives us the light and peace to walk through the valley. And, the Holy Spirit gives us direction leading us to the other side.
Isaiah 43:1-3 Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you will not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Isreal, your Savior.
Isaiah 12:2 Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation.
Philippians 4:6-7 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. 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.
Psalm 9:9-10 The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Psalm 34:4 I sought the Lord, and He answered me, and delivered me from all fears.
Psalm 27:1-3 The Lord is my light and my salvation whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.
Joshua 1:9 Be strong and courageous; do not be frightened or dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.
1 Peter 5:10 And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, Will Himself restore you and make you strong, for, and steadfast.
Jesus is our Lord and Savior. His blood covers us in all situations. Difficult times test our faith and strengthens our relationship with the Lord. Is your faith strong despite the burdens of life? Do you find rest in His peace that will carry you through? Rely on the Lord to see you through the worst of times and the best of times. He is our only Rock. He is our Savior.
Being fearless in the natural is foolish. Being fearless in the spirit is supernatural. The Lord is my life and my salvation. He is the stronghold of my life, whom shall I be afraid?
~ Lisa Blair
“The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid? When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.
One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord.” Psalm 27:1-6 NIV
Feeling defeated is a human trait that Christians must overcome to become ambassadors for Christ.
~ Lisa Blair
Have you ever felt defeated? Paul wrote this letter to the disciples who were preaching about Jesus to crowds of non-believers. Their lives were being threatened, and they were beaten and jailed. Paul wanted the disciples to know that their efforts were not unnoticed by God and their rewards were forthcoming. He told them they would be hard pressed, but not crushed; they would often be perplexed, but should not despair; they would be persecuted, but God would not abandon them and; they would be struck down, but not destroyed.
“But now, GOD ’s Message, the God who made you in the first place, “Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you. I’ve called your name. You’re mine. When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you. When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down. When you’re between a rock and a hard place, it won’t be a dead end— Because I am GOD, your personal God, The Holy of Israel, your Savior.” Isaiah 43:1-3 MSG
He encouraged them to continue to spread the Gospel, a ‘treasure’ because it contains rich truths, and are the blessing of the new covenant. The Gospel speaks to the riches of God and of Christ, of grace and of glory. He wanted to empower the disciples who were the vessels of the Word. Paul spoke to the disciples, we are not completely unlike them in that we are God’s ambassadors. We are today’s clay pots. They were the clay pots, many felt at a loss during these tribulations. Paul shared that even though they may have been at a loss as to what to say to the masses, they should not give up. Luke shared that God would give them the words to say when the time was right, Luke 12;12 – The Holy Spirit will give you the words to say at the moment when you need them. God also gives us the words to say in any situation in life, be it a speech at school, work, prayer group, or during family conversations.
“We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.”
2 Corinthians 5:20 NIV
We are all ambassadors. We each hold the rich truth of the Gospel and have been told to carry it with us and share the Word with all around us. God will never abandon us or forsake us. The Holy Spirit guides our words and actions, especially in times of doubt or fear.
“So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them (be terrified of them). For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT
Life has twists and turns. We can be figuratively or physically be stoned and struck down, but as Paul said, Christ survived the hardships, troubles, and frustrations that he faced. The disciples faced disappointments, exhaustion, harassment, mocking, and jeering standing by the side of Christ. Christ was mercilessly beaten, prodded and killed. Paul shares that there was a wearing effect of the ministry on Christ (he was very man and very God). Like Christ, the disciples experienced mental, emotional, and physical tolls.
We experience some form of the above in our personal and spiritual lives. Christ taught the disciples, and through adoption – taught us that we must deny ourselves, not gravitate to self, and put Him first. We must decrease, so He can increase. We must see Christ’s strength in all we do and rely on His strength to stand in the midst of unbelievers. Like the disciples, we cannot be defeated whilst acknowledging our humanness. The humanness that becomes a clay jar, an earthen vessel, housing the treasures of the Gospel through the Holy Spirit (who dwells in us), who leads us and guides us through life.
Images – YouVersion.Bible.com; New Boston Church of Christ
Resources – bible study tools.com; biblehub.com; preceptaustin.org
The devil uses fear to hold us back, cripple, and paralyze us. I will not stand in fear any longer. The truth is stronger than fear. God is truth.~ LISA BLAIR
We never walk alone. As kids we had a favorite blankly or stuffed animal that gave us comfort in harrowing moments, even the boggy man backed down.
Today, as God’s children we have His hand to hold. We have the power to overcome all situations, circumstances, and consequences. Hold on to the Word. Hold on to Jesus. No trial is greater than God.
“When the resurrected Jesus appeared to the frightened disciples after His death, He greeted them, saying, “Peace be with you” (John 20:19). Now He could give them, and us, a new understanding of resting in what He has done for us. As we do, we can find the awareness of a confidence far deeper than our ever-changing feelings. Jesus came to bring peace into our lives and our world.” ~ AMY BOUCHER PYE