Day 4 – Prayer Brings Peace
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 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 4:4-7
J.I. Packer once described prayer as “finding our way through duty to delight.” What an apt description of the journey that prayer leads us into. The path of prayer will always lead us away from anxiety and toward peace and delight. In many ways anxiety is natural to our fallen world and to our flesh. It is easy to respond to life’s challenges and difficulties by worrying about our problems. It is interesting that no one needs to be taught how to worry. Rather what we all must learn is how to pray.
When we pray, which may initially feel like a duty, we will eventually discover delight and peace, as Packer affirms. Paul states the same idea by pointing out that the peace of Christ, which we all crave, is only accessible through prayer. When we bring our problems and requests before the Lord, rather than obsessing over them, Philippians 4:7 tells us that God’s peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. Heaven’s serenity, joy and rest is ours in Christ as we come before God and make our requests known to him. What an amazing promise! Prayer is the vehicle by which we can access the peace of God that surpasses all understanding. So then, let us pray!
I can picture the Apostle Paul’s reaction to me if we were sitting together over coffee and I began to share the cares and burdens which weigh my heart down with anxiety. I can see him putting his hand on my shoulder and saying “Let’s take that to the Lord in prayer right now.” I can see Paul pulling down heaven’s peace with his prayers. I can see him enamored by the greatness and love of Jesus, fully trusting Him to make good on His promise to quiet our hearts’ turmoil with His peace.
Many Christians today would settle for a little bit of peace to get by or a little bit of peace to be able to sleep at night. But we are promised so much more in these verses. We are promised the very peace of God. That peace of God however is found on our knees. That peace of God is received with our hands lifted up high in prayer. So let us kneel and lift our hands to God in prayer!
Father, we praise You and worship You for being the God of peace. Thank You Jesus for dying on the cross for our sins and in our place, making peace by the blood of Your cross. We come to You now and we cast our cares on You because You care for us. You promise rest for the weary soul and so we receive Your peace and rest anew and afresh now by faith. Let Your peace guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. In His Name we pray, amen.
Ministry Fellow, Christian Union Gloria (Harvard College)
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