4 Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.(Philippians 4v3-7)
This was the first bit of the Bible I knew off by heart. I found it in my little red new testament and psalms that I was given by the Gideon society when they did a school assembly in my first year at warden park. I still remember sitting in the sports hall. Anyway, I have had this Bible with me ever since I was eleven and I am so thrilled that you now have it because it is my most treasured possession. I initially use the Where to find help when section at the beginning to find my way around and these verses are mentioned in there.
Here are three things that I love about these verses:
- rejoicing is the best way to get over anxiety and worry. I have often been able to do this on the outside but often carried too much anxious thought on the inside. as I look back over the years, I see that God has taken care of my fears and I wish I had rejoiced so much more in the midst of them.
- I really like the emphasis on gentleness. It was one of the things that I loved about dad and everyone noticed it about him and the only thing that I remember from dad’s funeral service was Roger who began his eulogy with the description of him as a gentle man. Gentleness does not mean that we should be like doormat. Jesus was nothing like that. It means to surrendered life to God and so show compassion to all because life is not a competition.
- I love the final verse because it is saying that nothing is too small or too big to ask for help from God with, and if we start with a thankful heart for all the blessings that God gives us each day, we find the simple child like not childish belief and trust in Jesus who showed us what God is like. Peace that transcends understanding means that we do not need to have a clue about how God is going to fix things, or even why God is allowed stuff like motor neurons disease, to experience the peace that the Holy Spirit longs to give us. I know that peace. Not always but most days when I pray with thankfulness to God for all the blessings that I have been given in this time. You are a huge part of that.
Here are three songs that speak to me of these things. The servant king one is about what I was saying about gentleness. The raise a hallelujah one is about rejoicing in the middle of our worries hallelujah means prise the Lord in Hebrew.