“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
Over the years, as a recovering worrywart, this verse has spoken directly to me over and again as a strong reminder of the cure to this stronghold. It also reminds me of who is sovereign over all things and the reward for trusting in God and taking everything to Him in prayer – peace that surpasses all understanding. It’s not something you can talk yourself into or manufacture yourself. Only God gives this type of peace. A peace that permeates your soul, brings calm to the raging storm, and sets your troubles free. It also guards your heart and your mind – the two areas where worry and anxiousness are birthed and magnified.
As a child in the lap of a comforting parent, I picture climbing up on Jesus’ lap. His reassuring arms around me, I can unburden all that concerns me, knowing He will lovingly take care of it. I can share anything and be in conversation with Him throughout my entire day. Whenever I am uncertain, fearful, frustrated or angry, I go to Him in prayer, pour out my heart and know that it is safe with Him. He understands and will be a shelter in my storm.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NLT)
The other key element of “Everything by Prayer” is learning to go to God FIRST. How often do we try to figure and reason things out and finally, and only, when we reach the end of our rope, we cry out to God and ask for His help? Or make all kinds of plans and then ask God to bless them? He is all-knowing and all-powerful. He knows what’s going to happen this afternoon, six months, or years from now. Seeking His wisdom, insight, and guidance will often alleviate endless frustration of trying to figure things out on my own and making a total mess of it. His understanding is so far above and beyond my limited pea size reasoning or logic. I often go astray when I “lean on my own understanding.” I get ahead of God or step out in my pride, and plans and soon things come crashing down around me. But when I go to Him first, trust Him and allow Him to show me the path I should take, I have peace and joy in knowing I am protected under the umbrella of His perfect will.
“Everything by Prayer” has become the guiding compass of my life as well as for True Identity Ministries (TIM). When others ask me to consider an area of responsibility or key decision, I always tell them, “I will pray about it and let you know.” Since my life is in my Heavenly Father’s hands, I need to consult with Him first. Often He will give the green light to say “Yes,” but sometimes he gives a “No.” Either way, I can move forward with a settled peace, competent that I am in His plan. I’ve learned to pray about everything, including writing this blog. I ask HIM what HE wants me to write each week and then when I sit down at my computer; I pray and ask Him to give me His words. And He does!
It is the same with TIM. Those of us entrusted with the leadership go to Him in prayer about EVERYTHING concerning the ministry. We pray at the beginning of every board meeting, team meeting, or event. We ask the Lord to give us HIS mind, understanding and ideas, and to show us next steps in the things He’s calling us to do. We ask Him to give us unity in spirit, love and compassion for one another and those He’s called us to minister to. We ask for faith to continue to trust in His plans and provision, and we ask Him to set many free in their true identity as we share His true identity message. We find when we start with prayer; God then guides our discussions and decisions. He brings new and creative ideas into the mix and shows us the way we could never have figured out on our own! He reassures us that we hear Him correctly and on the right path. TIM is HIS ministry, and HE knows best.
Let Him be your wings, not just your safety net. Instead of making plans and then asking God to bless them, pray and ask God to show you HIS plans. They are already blessed!
Keep on praying!
For His Glory,