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Then, peace.

“Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7

Okay. Seems like there’s more, like I need to know what I need to do or be for “then” to become reality. What do I need to know first?

Paul had just told the believers at Philippi not to worry. He even gave them a formula to use instead of worry:

pray about everything
tell God what you need
thank Him for all He has done

THEN we experience the peace.

So, if I worry
I won’t know this peace
that surpasses
human understanding?

That’s what it sounds like to my simple self.

When we worry, we are meditating on what we do not want. We are focused on all the things we don’t want to see. We are zoomed in on the happenings we don’t want to experience. In time, the worry becomes like a prayer.

A prayer for that which we fear.

“But I’m just a worrier. God made me that way.”

Nope. Sorry. I beg to differ.

If God made us a certain way, he would not then tell us to not be that certain way. If He designed and created you to worry, He would not then tell you not to worry. It’s high time to drop that excuse and get to work!

When worry tempts us, appearing as though it’s there to help through the day, take hold of it and lift every item it mentions to the Lord. Every minute detail that worry mentions.

When my husband had a near-fatal brain aneurysm, I had the perfect opportunity to worry for hours on end. Let me tell you, every what-if and what-could-be marched itself right up to me to visit.

But God.
Over the years, I had learned to tell Him what I wanted, what I needed, and I did so that night.

I told Him I didn’t want to lose my beloved. I said I had no idea how I would live if he were gone. I contemplated paying bills and mowing the yard and fixing the car and all manner of things. As those things came to mind, I would say something like, “Lord, you’re gonna have to take care of all that, because I can’t.”

As I dropped all those fears and worries on my Savior, I recalled all the things He had done. Not only what I’d read in the Book, but what I’d known Him to do in my life. And I thanked Him again and again for being the amazing God He is, Faithful and True.

That’s when this verse, Philippians 4:7 became real to me.

Sitting in that trauma ICU waiting room as doctors and nurses worked to keep my man alive, all the while expecting him to die, I felt peace. I could not then nor now explain the sense of calm I felt. I knew that no matter the outcome, he was okay and I was okay.

Of course, I told God over and over the outcome I preferred, but I also admitted to Him and myself that whatever His Will was for us, we would be just fine.

So today, whenever worry marches itself up to you for attention, list every item on its laundry list to the One who made you and adores you. Tell Him why those things scare you. Thank Him for all He has done. If you can’t think of the things He has done for you, mention parting the Red Sea, providing food for the Israelites, protection from enemies, and salvation. Understand that no matter what His will for you is, you’ll be okay.

Then, taste that peace and be in wonder of how amazing our God is.

Coffee, Bible, Journal.