“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. The peace of God which passeth all understanding shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”Philippians 4:6-7
The Peace of God
The God of love has constant peace in everything, and is willing to extend it to you in order to keep you in everything. His peace will protect and rule over your feelings, your judgment, and everything else. If you will “let your requests be made known unto God,” you may be sure that He will answer. Therefore, you are to do it by giving Him thanks. Then cares will no longer weigh your heart down and you will do what is pleasing to God.
But first you need to trust God, and then the very peace of God Himself will keep your heart steady. Paul did not say here that your heart will keep the peace of God; but, after you cast your burden on the One whose peace cannot be upset, then His peace will keep your heart. He is in charge of and knows everything before it happens. He can calm your heart that is full of burdens. Then you will receive “…the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, [that] shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
The peace of God also brings you relief and encouragement. He reassures you that you are in right standing with Him and have His interest and attention. He also gives you hope that you will be blessed. And His peace will keep your mind and heart, through Christ. When you have to face troubles, this peace will also keep you from committing sin and falling. It enables you to remain calm and content. Paul’s life was a testimony to these things that he taught.
The God of Peace
You are surrounded by all manner of evil in your life here on earth. But God expects you to be involved only with what is good, true, noble, just, pure, lovely, and of good report. If you want to receive happiness, blessing, and joy, and to keep having peace of mind, don’t get involved with the evil around you or in others. To please God, you need to do the very opposite. This is why God gave us His Word.
If you will continue to think about the things of God, you won’t become distressed or overwhelmed by the power of evil. Paul could talk to the people of the church at Philippi about what they had seen and heard and learned from his example. For anyone who does these things, not just the peace of God, but the God of peace will be with them. Don’t allow yourself to listen to evil things. Don’t be slow to hear what is of God either, or the consequences will be bad; then the God of peace will no longer be able to be your companion, and evil thoughts will ensnare you and hold you back.
Things that are pure
“Whatsoever things are honest…just…pure…lovely…of good report; if there be any virtue…any praise, think on these things” (v. 8). “Pure” here is an old word for all kinds of purity, referring to clean things, thoughts, words, or deeds. It concerns what is chaste, in relation to your state of mind and the actions of your body, and also being free from all contamination from what is obscene and causes improper sexual excitement. You are to keep yourself undefiled in the way, from the pollution of sin, filthy words, and deeds. Whatever is “honest, just, pure, lovely, and of good report…think on these things,” especially before you go to bed each night, so they will remain in your mind as you sleep. But how often do you usually tend to think about other things instead, like all those hurts, disappointments, or thoughtless words involving you today?
God’s peace keeps our heart
Do you bring your anxiety to God? And do you know that He is always faithful? Whatever you are anxious about can actually lead you to a way to being filled with God’s peace. Paul never permitted himself to become anxious and troubled about himself, or the danger the Church was in, or the people who were suffering, or the souls that were lost. He considered all of these in relation to God, not to himself. Since God has peace about all these things—why shouldn’t Paul also? He took them off of himself by laying them all out before God. Then God’s peace was able to keep his heart and mind. But this was not just for Paul—all God’s people should do the same, and then no room would remain for being anxious.
Instead of occupying yourself with things that will bring you down, commit every trouble you have to God. He isn’t lacking anything—He has more than enough to help and take care of you. Keep up your connection with God. Then you will be able to talk with Him and understand how He works with those who believe in Him.
Until He comes again, God has promised that His peace will keep your heart and mind through Christ Jesus, as you trust and honor Him. Follow Paul’s advice concerning all “those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in [him], do: and the God of peace shall be with you” (v. 9).
[Additional image credits: Featured image (when available) Fa Barba from Unsplash]