6 Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

This verse has been in my heart and on my mind a lot lately! It seems like there is so much to worry about—kids going back to school, new things with the three churches, covid rates, to mask or not. From the little things of what to wear today to the things that seem larger than life like Afghanistan and wildfires and hurricanes, there are so many things that weigh on us and cause us to worry. And yet, we don’t have to dwell in this worry or let it drag us down. Scripture tells us to take these worries to God in prayer. Our worries lose their power when taken to God and we are promised peace in return.
This verse makes it all seem so simple, just pray and your worries will disappear and be replaced with peace. But I find that worry is pretty sticky—no matter how you try to get rid of it, it clings and hangs on. It is easy to say just pray it away, but it’s not that easy in real life. Thankfully, God knows that in our humanness, we need more to hang on to, more to grab ahold of than just pray. If we back up to verse 5 we find all that we need to combat worry. Philippians 4:5b says “The Lord is near.” The Lord is near!! We don’t stand in our worries alone. Even in those things that SEEM so much bigger than us – those worries that seem ginormous – we know that the one who created all things is standing right there with us. We never have to weather the storm by ourselves.

But Philippians also suggests a focus change for us. We are told, “rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.” This rejoicing is only made possible by knowing that Christ is with us. And this rejoicing helps us to no longer focus on our worries, but to count our blessings instead.

So, what can we rejoice and give thanks for today? What worries can we lay at Jesus’ feet, knowing that he is always present with us?

Rejoicing with you,
Pastor Nikki