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Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Peace, part 2 - Guard

Royal Guard at Buckingham Palace from Flickr via Wylio
© 2011 Loren Javier, Flickr | CC-BY-ND | via Wylio
...do not be anxious about anything, 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 your minds in Christ Jesus.
-Philippians 4:6-7 ESV
I blogged here about the mind-blowing peace described in verse 7 - but lately I've been thinking about something else in this passage. It describes that mind-blowing peace as a guard. God's peace is there for protection. Protection from what? From anxiety, says verse 6! If you're feeling anxious, if you're feeling fearful, for some reason peace isn't guarding your mind and your heart right.

In that case, you need to make an adjustment. That adjustment is taking your requests to God in prayer. Actually, it can involve two kinds of prayer, or maybe two intensities of prayer. "Supplication" just means that you're still making a request, but there's a little more desperation to it. Maybe your emotions are coming into it a little bit more. Maybe you're asking God for something that means an awful lot to you. It's getting personal; it's getting real. You're laying it on the line: "God, You're my last hope for this. Please help me!"

But you're not praying selfishly. You're bringing your need to God, but you're also bringing a heart filled with thankfulness. Somehow I think that's a key. What if God doesn't give you what you asked for? Even then, your heart is still filled with thankfulness, because you know God has something even better in store for you.

And maybe that's also how the peace of God can guard your heart and mind. You've presented your requests to a God that you know loves you, and you're filled with thankfulness, because you know that God either is going to fill that request, or do something even better. With that kind of certainty, who can stay anxious?

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