Part 9: God’s Word in Times Like These – Do Not Worry
We can easily manage if we will only take, each day, the burden appointed to it. But the load will be too heavy for us if we carry yesterday’s burden over again today, and then add the burden of the morrow before we are required to bear it.
4 (A)Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!
5 Let your [a]gentleness be known to all men. (B)The Lord is at hand.
6 (C)Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with (D)thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and (E)the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
Meditate on These Things
8 Finally, brethren, whatever things are (F)true, whatever things are(G)noble, whatever things are(H)just, (I)whatever things are pure, whatever things are(J)lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. 9 The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and (K)the God of peace will be with you.
Fear has the power to paralyse us and send us cowering in dark places. Paul reminds us that the best weapon against fear is prayer, as prayer leads us to God.
We serve a God who is all knowing and merciful and full of grace, who will never turn a blind eye to our everyday challenges.
He is the God who understands our greatest fear and sent his divine Holy Spirit to comfort us. What are your fears as you gaze into the next few days?When we pray, God transforms our fears, making them insigniﬁcant as he enlarges our view of him.
May you and I ﬁnd great comfort in the words of Jesus when he said, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34). Earlier on in this passage, He had asked a soul-searching question, “Can any one of you, by worrying, add a single hour to your life?” (vs 27). When you and I choose not to worry, we are demonstrating our faith in God Almighty!
With your family
Invite each member of your household to think of a nursery rhyme, words from a song, memory verse, etc. Then say ‘GO’ and everyone says their words in a loud voice. When you’ve finished, were you able to understand what each other was saying? Often, when lots of people are talking about something of concern, it is hard to understand what is really happening, and this can create fear within us.
Invite everyone to get something that they can use to make some noise e.g. pots and spoons, drums or other musical instruments, etc. Set a timer for 30 seconds and make some noise. Then stop and enjoy the silence for 30 seconds.
Today’s reading reminds us that in challenging times, God is present and gives us His peace.
Talk about how you could experience God’s peace within your family this week. Think of people we need to forgive, or we need to ask for their forgiveness. Think of things we should do, or stop doing in order to bring peace into your everyday life
Take turns to pray this blessing on each other:
“May the God of peace (v 9) give you the peace of God (v 7) today.”
In John 14:27 (NIV) Jesus last words before he ascended into heaven were:
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Lord during these times of fear, help us to remain grounded in your love. Amen