How can God's peace shield your coronary heart?

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Do not be afraid of anything, but present your requests in every situation through prayer and thanksgiving to God. And the peace of God beyond understanding will protect your heart and mind in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4: 6-7).

"Peace that I leave with you; I give you my peace. I'm not giving you how the world gives Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid ”(John 14, 27).

In both of the above sections we are told not to be fearful, troubled, or fearful while promising God's peace. Philippians 4: 7 says that the peace of God will protect our hearts and minds. How does this work?

The peace of God

The order is different in each passage. Paul says in his letter to the Philippians, don't worry, and the peace of God will protect your hearts. Jesus says, "I will leave you in my peace. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid."

They are both conditional statements. Imagine a parent saying to a child, "We're going to have a great day at Disney World. Stay with me today and I'll protect you from losing yourself in the crowd." The parents could reverse the statement and so say, "I will protect you from getting lost in the crowd, but you have to stay with me."

The promise is conditional. John MacArthur says: "The believer is promised peace of mind or serenity who has a grateful attitude based on the unshakable trust that God is able and willing to do the best for His children" (MacArthur Study Bible Note to Philippians 4: 7). . God's peace will protect or preserve us as long as we trust him.

It's like the bumper sticker says, "Know God, know peace. No God, no peace."

It is also interesting that Philippians 4: 7 refers to “the peace of God” and Philippians 4: 9 to the “god of peace”. Trust the God of Peace and experience the Peace of God. They go together. You cannot have one without the other.

Perhaps you have heard the story behind the beloved hymn "It is good with my soul". The writer Horatio Spafford wrote the words after hearing the news that his four young daughters had been lost at sea. The song begins

When peace accompanies my way like a river; When worries roll like sea waves; Whatever my lot, you taught me to say; It is good, it is good with my soul.

How could Horatio Spafford or anyone write about God's peace after such a loss? Horatio was not only a lawyer but also a Presbyterian. Despite his tragic loss, he experienced the peace of God because he had already made a conscious decision to follow the God of peace. Peace protected his heart and mind that would otherwise have been hopelessly destroyed.

Look at the contrast in Jeremiah 17: 5-10:

This is what the Lord says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from flesh and whose heart turns away from the Lord. This person will be like a bush in the wasteland; You won't see prosperity when it comes to that. You will live in the arid places of the desert, in a salt country where nobody lives.

But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is in him. They will be like a tree planted by water and the roots of which will be sent from the stream. Don't be afraid of the heat; The leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and always bears fruit. "

The heart is fraudulent and incurable about everything. Who can understand that? I, the Lord, search the heart and examine the mind to reward everyone for their behavior, for what their deeds deserve. "

God protects your heart

Do you ever feel like living in a parched place in the wilderness, in a salt country where nobody lives? No water, no shade, no oasis, no refreshment? It is a life without the god of peace. No protection. Open to the elements.

And then there is the person who trusts in the Lord, whose trust is in him. Instead of a bush in the desert, this person is like a tree planted by the water.

Heat may come, but there is nothing to worry about because its roots constantly soak up the water from the stream. His refreshment is built in, inner peace and protection go beyond any understanding.

The passage in Jeremiah continues that the Lord explores the heart and examines the mind. The God of Peace wants to protect our hearts and minds with His Peace.

So David asked God to search him and know his heart. Test him and know his anxious thoughts and see if there was an offensive path in him (Psalm 139: 23-24).

Fear is offensive to God because it conveys a lack of trust in Him. (You can find a great book on the subject in Max Lucados Anxious for Nothing.)

Why is that important?

There is a great little story in Matthew chapter 8 about the disciples on the Sea of ​​Galilee when a sudden, angry storm threatened to overtake the boat. Jesus was in the boat with them, but he was sleeping.

The disciples startled and awakened Jesus and asked him to save them. "He replied:" You of little faith, why are you so afraid? "Then he got up and rebuked the winds and waves, and it was completely calm" (Matthew 8:26).

Her fear showed her lack of trust. Although the god of peace was right there with them, they did not trust him yet and therefore had no peace. We cannot simply believe that it exists. we have to learn to trust him!

Photo credit: © iStock / Getty Images Plus / Prostock-Studio

Kristi Walker has been a missionary in Berlin for over 15 years and works as a director of the student ministry with an international church. She is the author of two books – Disappointment: A subtle way away from Christ and convinced. Applying biblical principles to life's decisions.

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