“Get Your Heart Fixed”

Gal. 5:22-23; Phil. 4:6-7; Fruit of the Spirit Series #4

Sunday A.M., May 8, 2016

First Baptist Church Friendsville

This morning we are continuing in a series we began a few weeks ago on “The Fruit of the Spirit,” as found in Galatians 5.

– A few weeks ago we talked about love.

– Last Sunday we talked about joy.

– Today we are going to talk about peace.

Now let me go ahead and tell you that covering “peace” is going to take me 2 Sundays, and I will also go ahead and tell you that I think the really good part of this is what we are going to cover next Sunday morning.

Now you may come back next Sunday morning, hear the message, and say, “No, that was no better than what you shared last week.”  But I don’t think that will be the case, because today is sort of the “set up” for the good stuff. Today is a lot about why we need peace, and next Sunday is a lot about the phenomenal blessing of peace that is provided to us.

Let’s go ahead and read these two verses that this series is based upon, beginning in…

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness (meekness), self-control.

Again, agape love comes from God’s Spirit, and

genuine joy comes from God’s Spirit, and now…

true peace comes from God’s Spirit.

That “makes sense,” because we read in…

Romans 8:6 (that) …the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.

Backing up to the OT, we read in…

Judges 6:24 So Gideon built an altar there to the Lord, and called it The-Lord-Is-Peace, or, Jehovah-Shaolom.

We read in…

Isaiah 9:6 that Jesus is the …the Prince of Peace.

…and Paul prays in…

Romans 15:33 Now the God of peace be with you all.  Amen.

By the way, the word “peace” occurs in the KJV 429 times.

Now peace is experienced in 3 major ways…

1st – there is Peace with God;

2nd – there is Peace with Others; and

3rd – there is Peace within Ourselves.

We will be talking about this 3rd aspect primarily, but let me touch on the other two for just a minute.

1st – there is Peace with God.  We will never truly have peace with others or

within ourselves if we do not first make peace with God.

Now God has provided a way to have peace with Him.

We read in…

Ephesians 6:15 about …the gospel of peace.

And we read in…

Colossians 1:20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself…

An OT verse that pertains to this is found in…

Isaiah 53:5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,

he was crushed for our iniquities;

the punishment that brought us peace was on him,

and by his wounds we are healed.

So God has made a way for us to be reconciled, a way for us to have peace with Him.  He made the way, but we must turn and accept Christ as Lord and Savior in order for there to be peace with God.

When that happens, we can say as Paul did in…

Romans 5:1 Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

So…

1st – there is Peace with God;

2nd – there is Peace with Others.

Jesus said in…

Matthew 5:9 Blessed are the peacemakers.

We read in…

Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.

Once we have made peace with God through the cross of Calvary, we are to let that peace “rule” in our hearts.

Paul is talking to the whole church here.  He is saying that we are all to let the peace of God rule in our hearts.

– One version says… Let the peace of Christ be in control in your heart (for you were in fact called as one body to this peace).

– A paraphrase says… Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other.

The word “rule” here means to “direct, control, rule,” and it also means “to be an umpire.”

The peace of God is to serve as an umpire in all of our relationships.  It is what is to keep peace on the field, so that it is in control, not us.

So,

1st – there is Peace with God;

2nd – there is Peace with Others; and

3rd – there is Peace within Ourselves.

This is what I really want us to focus on this morning.

Joke] I read the other day about a 95-year-old woman in a Nursing Home that said that she was just “worried sick.”

Her friend asked her why since she looked well and was being well taken care of.

The elderly lady said, “Well, every close friend I ever had has already died and gone on to heaven.”  She added, “I’m afraid they’re all up there wondering where I went.”

There is always something to worry about, isn’t there?

I want you to look at and

think about this sermon title as we begin this morning…    “Get Your Heart Fixed”

Now, I don’t mean that in the way you probably think I mean that.

When we fix something, we make it right; we make it work like it’s supposed to.

But there is another way in which the word “fix” is used.  If we “fix” a cabinet against a wall, then we have made it secure and immovable.  We have anchored it.

That is the idea that the psalmist had when he wrote in…

Psalm 57:7 My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.

His heart was secure, immovable, anchored.

Or, the same thought is expressed in…

Psalm 112:6 “Surely [a good man] will never be shaken; the righteous will be in everlasting remembrance. 7 He will not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is fixed/steadfast, trusting in the Lord. 8 His heart is established; he will not be afraid…

“Fixed,” as when a young man sees a gorgeous woman strolling down the side-walk; or when a young woman fixes her eyes on a tall, dark, hot fudge sundae.

We are talking about fixing, stabilizing, our hearts.

Let me ask you, is your heart “fixed” this morning?  Is your thinking, and are your emotions, all over the place, or are they steady, fixed, settled, anchored, because of the peace of God that is a part of the fruit of the Spirit?

If not, let me encourage you to “Get Your Heart Fixed.”

ILL.] In 1555, Nicholas Ridley was burned at the stake because of his witness for Christ.  On the night before Ridley’s execution, his brother offered to remain with him in the prison cell to just be with him and comfort him.

Ridley declined the offer and replied that he intended to go to bed and sleep as quietly as he ever had in his whole life.  He said that “because he knew the peace of God, he could rest in the strength of the everlasting arms of his Lord to meet his need.”

That is someone with a fixed heart.

Look with me now at Philippians 4:6-7.

These two verses are some of my favorites.  They have carried me, and many of you, through many trials.  We live in an anxious world, and we need to know, and appreciate, and benefit from, the peace of God.

Let’s read it…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

What a wonderful promise!

Now, in order to “talk through” this idea of experiencing peace, instead of worry, or anxiety, there are a few ways to alliterate an outline.

We could talk about…

  1. The Condition – of anxiety.
  2. The Command – of what to do about it.
  3. The Consequences – the positive benefits of God’s peace.

Or, we could talk about…

  1. The Anxiety – we live with.
  2. The Asking – our prayer to God.
  3. The Answer – of peace, which the Lord gives.

But I am going to suggest we talk about it this way…

  1. The Pressures – of life which bring anxiety.
  2. The Prayer – we are to pray.
  3. The Peace – that God provides.

…so that when the Pressures of life build up for you, you can remember that there is a Prayer you can pray that will bring about the Peace of God.

So to start with, let’s consider…

  1. The Pressures of life, and the anxieties that can follow.

I think the pressures of life are somewhat assumed when we read what Paul wrote in…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing,

Now this is not, of course, talking about legitimate cares or concerns that we live with.  This is talking about the worry & anxiety that we allow in our lives which is rooted in a distrust of God’s care for us as His children.

Now note, that since we are commanded to not do this, that means that worry is a sin.  Sorry to break that to you, but that is the reality of the situation.

Anxious = to have concern, to worry, or to fret.

The word “anxious” comes from two words – “to divide” & “mind”  -> “to divide the mind” -> as in James 1:8, where it says, “a double-minded man is unstable in all his ways.”

ILL.] Someone said, “It’s like the mule who stood between two haystacks and starved to death trying to decide which stack to eat from.”

That is the way we are sometimes – paralyzed.

Now we live in an age of fear & anxiety.

ILL.] A survey on “worry” broke it down this way:

– things that never happen – 40%

– things that cannot be changed by all the worry in the world – 30%

– needless health worries – 12%

– petty miscellaneous worries – 10%

– real legitimate concerns – 8%

So, we should each be able to drop about 92% of what weighs us down.  Yet each of these seems to be able to have its paralyzing effect on us.

Now, there is a growing concern in our nation about…

– the rise of terrorist attacks,

– the rise of ISIS,

– the rise of Islamic jihad.

Now, when does that legitimate concern cross over into an illegitimate anxiety, I am not sure, but we all know that it can.

And then, many people in the world live with a fear of:

– other people (various crimes – rape, murder, theft, etc.);

– natural disasters (tornadoes, floods, hurricanes, etc.);

– job security;

– faithfulness of their spouse;

– financial struggles; and

– whether or not they will “make it” and not at best just “get by” in life.

ILL.] I have here a copy of a U.S. News and World Report magazine from a few years back.  The article is titled, “Conquering Your Phobias: New Techniques and Treatments for Overcoming FEAR.”

They list all these phobias.  And then at the end they give a list under the heading, “Sources for help.”  Funny, they don’t list God, the Bible, or the Fruit of the Spirit.

ILL.] This past January the New York Times had an article about a new drug they say can cure phobias.  One quote from the article said this… “Evolutionary design has left us a few million years out of date; we are hard-wired for a Paleolithic world, but have to live in a modern one. The irrational fear of anxiety disorders was once probably useful and lifesaving. No longer.”

Again, certainly no thought of a sovereign God being able to calm your fears.

ILL.] There is a website called phobialist.com.  They list somewhere over 500 different phobias.

One phobia is “Phobophobia,” which is defined as a “fear of fear itself.”

ILL.] Do you know what the top 10 phobias are?

They are listed as…

  1. Trypophobia – The fear of holes
  2. Aerophobia – The fear of flying
  3. Mysophobia – The fear of germs
  4. Claustrophobia – The fear of small spaces
  5. Astraphobia – The fear of thunder and lightning
  6. Cynophobia – The fear of dogs
  7. Agoraphobia – The fear of open or crowded spaces
  8. Acrophobia – The fear of heights
  9. Ophidiophobia – The fear of snakes
  10. Arachnophobia – The fear of spiders

Someone probably has a fear of falling out of a plane, falling through thunder & lightning, into a small hole, crowded with dogs, snakes, and spiders. ☺

So, people live with a lot of worries and anxieties.

I found this a little more practical, or realistic…

ILL.] A magazine did a survey of business managers and asked them what they were fearful of.  Here is what they found…

(I would think this accurately represents our society.)

  1. Own health and fitness…………………………73%
  2. Lack of time for family or leisure pursuits………49%
  3. Their children’s problems………………………43%

(tie) Job-related stress……………………….43%

  1. Personal investments…………………………..39%
  2. Estate planning……………………………….37%
  3. Relationship with children……………………..34%
  4. Aging………………………………………..30%
  5. Income level………………………………….22%
  6. Their marriages……………………………….21%

Some of these are legitimate concerns, but are not issues that should bring anxiety into our lives.

-> So fear grips, anxiety takes hold, and worry is the “practice of the day.”  Drug abuse has become rampant, and I am not talking about the drug addict on the street, but people we see daily who are on uppers & downers, trying to cope with the stress of life.

Joke] Someone said that this is the “age of the pill” – pills to perk you up, pills to calm you down.  One fellow said he had a friend who used uppers and downers. He asked this friend one day how he felt.  His friend said he didn’t know because he forgot which pill he had taken.

-> And then some worry constantly – if there is nothing to worry about, they get fearful about that, that it is the “calm before the storm.”  Q.) Know anybody like that?

ILL.] They go around like a “sore-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.”  They just live to find the next thing to be all worked up and anxious about.

Consider this verse…

Proverbs 14:30 A heart at peace gives life to the body.

My dad was a family physician, and he used to say that he believed that at least 50% of all medical treatment is for “nerves.”  He was saying that people’s “nervousness,” the stress & worry & anxiety in their lives, was causing things like…

– ulcers (which millions of Americans suffer from)

[Ulcer = “something you get when you mountain climb over mole hills.”]

– chest pain,

– back aches,

– headaches,

– heart attacks; etc.

I think my Dad’s sentiments have been confirmed…

– the AMA (the American Medical Association) has released a study that indicates that 1/2 of office visits are stress related.

– And I understand the AAFP (American Academy of Family Physicians) asserts that 2/3rds of office visits are due to stress.

– Dr. Herbert Benson, president of the Mind/Body Medical Institute of Boston’s Deaconess Hospital and Harvard Medical School says, “Anywhere from 60% to 90% of visits to doctors are in the mind-body, stress-related realm.”  Finally…

– The American Institute of Stress states similar statistics when it says, “75%-90% of all visits to primary care physicians are for stress-related complaints or disorders.”

As you can see, this opinion has caught on.

These physical difficulties are ultimately a result of what a friend calls “stinking thinking.”

So people fret, and worry, but you notice they do not want to turn to God, at least until the last minute.

ILL.] I heard once about an elderly lady who was facing some tremendous difficulties.  The family tried to console her and someone said, “All we can do now is pray.”

The elderly lady replied, “Oh dear, has it gotten to that point?”

Folks, sometimes we become “practical atheists” when it comes to trusting God with the worries of life.

What a contrast to what the Prophet Isaiah wrote in…

Isaiah 26:3 Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.

Quote]- Let me read to you about a pilot, from Charles Swindoll’s book, Growing Strong in the Seasons of Life:  (“Commence prayer”) – p. 273…]

Think about how too many of us handle stress & anxiety this way…

“An unknown author once made this analogy: “Can you imagine the captain of a ship, driven about by rough winds and desiring to drop anchor, trying to find a suitable place to do so right on board his own vessel?  Such a thing seems ridiculous, but for the sake of a lesson, let’s picture the skipper proceeding in that fashion. He hangs the anchor at the prow, but still the boat drives before the wind; he casts it upon the deck, but this too fails to hold it steady; at last, he puts it down into the hold but has no better success.  You see, an anchor resting on the storm- driven craft itself will never do the job. Only as it is thrown into the deep can it be effective against wind and tide.

“In the very same way, that person whose confidence is in himself will never experience true peace and safety.  His actions are as futile as one who seeks to keep the anchor aboard his own ship. So cast your faith into the great depths of God’s eternal love and power.  Place your trust in the infinitely faithful One. Then you will be glad, for your heart will find stability and your fears will be quieted.”

Is that not what we seek to do?  – “cast our anchor” aboard our own ship?  No wonder we see so much anxiety both without and within the church.

So that is the “state of affairs,” and we are all affected in some way.  In light of all this, let’s notice not only the Pressure we are in, which commonly results in a lot of anxiety, but the Prayer that God gives us to pray so that we can enjoy the Peace that God provides.

Again, here is our outline.  These verses address…

  1. The Pressures – of life which bring anxiety.
  2. The Prayer – we are to pray.
  3. The Peace – that God provides.

We will pick up with this next Sunday.

Remember: the best is yet to come.

Allow me to end this morning with…

2 Thessalonians 3:16 Now may the Lord of peace Himself give you peace always in every way. The Lord be with you all.

Prayer…]

“Get Your Heart Fixed” – Part B

Gal. 5:22-23; Phil. 4:6-7; Fruit of the Spirit Series #5

Sunday A.M., May 15, 2016

First Baptist Church Friendsville

Intro.]

* Children are dismissed to KidStuff. *

* Please turn in your Bibles to Gal. 5 / Phil. 4. *

This morning we are continuing in a series we began several weeks ago on “The Fruit of the Spirit,” as found in Galatians 5.

– First we talked about love.

– And then a few weeks ago we talked about joy.

– Last Sunday we talked about peace.

– And today we are going to continue & finish the discussion on peace.

I mentioned to you last Sunday that I was going to need 2 Sundays to cover peace, and I told you that I think the really good part of this is what we are going to cover today, because last week was sort of the “set up” for the good stuff.  Last Sunday was a lot about why we need peace, and today is a lot about the phenomenal blessing of peace that is provided to God’s children when we trust in Him.

Let’s go ahead and read these two verses that this series is based upon, beginning in…

Galatians 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering (patience), kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness (meekness), self-control.

Again, all of this comes from God’s Spirit, not from all of us just being good people or from just trying real hard.  It only comes in a meaningful way when we allow the Lord to rule our hearts & minds.

Now let me pause and say that I believe the Lord is graciously choosing to use these messages in our lives.

– I have had a number of you comment to me that you are seeing more of how various things are “stealing your joy,” or how there is too much anxiety in your life, or whatever.

– For me personally, this is “wearing me out.”  I have preached on love, joy & peace, and the Lord has shown me that there is not enough of any of that in my life.  And I am looking ahead at patience & kindness and the rest of them, and I know already that I am in big trouble.

But that is what the Lord often does in our lives.  He raises an issue in our lives in some form or fashion, shows us how woefully deficient we are in demonstrating it, and then says, “You want more of that in your life?  Then abide in Me, like the branch abides in the Vine, and you will see it happen.”

So, let’s talk about experiencing greater peace in our lives.  To do so, let me review just a bit from last week and then continue on with the message that we began.

Last Sunday we noted that peace is experienced in 3 major ways.  There is…

1st – Peace with God; only when we have that can we then move on to have…

2nd – Peace with Others; and

3rd – Peace within Ourselves.

This 3rd aspect is what we are focusing on primarily.

3rd – Peace within Ourselves.

Our sermon title for this 2-part message, last Sunday and this morning, is…   “Get Your Heart Fixed”

The idea here is not repairing something.

Rather, it is the idea of fixing/securing/anchoring something.  In this case, our hearts.

It is what the psalmist had in mind when he wrote…

Psalm 57:7 My heart is fixed, O God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.

Or, the same thought is expressed in…

Psalm 112:6 “Surely [a good man] will never be shaken; the righteous will be in everlasting remembrance. 7 He will not be afraid of evil tidings; his heart is fixed/steadfast, trusting in the Lord. 8 His heart is established; he will not be afraid…

His heart was secure, immovable, anchored.

ILL.] David Livingstone was a great missionary to Africa.  At one point he was traveling down the Zambezi River further into the heart of what was a very dark continent.  He was the first white man to ever be in that area.

He had hired a number of natives to travel with him, and at one point on that great, broad river, they stopped and told Livingstone that it was unsafe to continue.  They said, “You dare not go further, for there are cannibals down there and they are savages, and it will mean the loss of your life. There is nothing but certain death down there!”

Livingstone paused, because a canoe floating down a river is a sitting duck for a poison arrow or for a spear that is thrown.  He paused, took out his Bible, dropped to his knees, and randomly opened his Bible. His eyes fell upon Matthew 28:20, which says, “I will go with you to the end of the age.”

Livingstone stood up and turned to the natives and said, “Put everything in the boats.  We are going down the river.” And he not only discovered the Victorian Falls and the great outlet that flowed to the Indian Ocean, but more importantly, he took the Gospel into the heart of Africa.

That is someone with a fixed heart, anchored in the sovereignty of God.

Let’s look again at Philippians 4:6-7.

Look closely as we read…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

In order to “talk through” this idea of experiencing peace, instead of worry, or anxiety, or fear, we began to talk about it this way…

  1. The Pressures – of life which bring anxiety.
  2. The Prayer – we are to pray.
  3. The Peace – that God provides.

…so that when the Pressures of life build up for you, you can remember that there is a Prayer you can pray that will bring about the Peace of God.

So most of our time last Sunday was spent on…

  1. The Pressures of life, and the anxieties that can follow.

Again, the pressures of life are somewhat assumed when we read what Paul wrote in…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing,

The word for anxious here is sometimes translated worry.  It has the idea of being “troubled with care.”  It has to do with how we think about things, so it is sometimes simply translated thought, but in a negative sense.

For instance, Jesus said in…

Matthew 6:27 “Which of you by taking thought (or, worrying) can add one cubit unto his stature?” – or –

Matthew 6:34 “Take therefore no thought (or, Don’t worry) for tomorrow: for tomorrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”

Or the word is sometimes translated care, but again, in a negative sense.

This verse is translated in the KJV, “Be careful for nothing.”

And then we read in…

1 Peter 5:6 Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, 7 casting all your care (or, worry) upon Him, for He cares for you.

The idea here is that…

– we don’t have to worry because God is worried about us;

– we don’t have to fret because God frets over us;

– we don’t have to lose sleep, because God us up anyway (as was in our Sunday School lesson this morning).

But if that anxiety/worry/fear is not cast upon the Lord, it can take over a person’s life with paralysis, with phobias, with panic attacks.

ILL.] I read the other day about someone who experienced a “panic attack” over their sex change.  Did you hear that Bruce Jenner, who became Caitlyn Jenner, is thinking about becoming “Bruce” again.

Listen to this, which was reported by Fox News this week…

“One source confirmed to me Caitlyn has made whispers of ‘sex change regret,’ hinting she might go back to being Bruce Jenner.”

Jenner, 66, is allegedly interested in transitioning back for relationship reasons.  “She’s still into women and wants to meet the right one.”

The idea that Jenner has had apprehensions over the life change is nothing new.  Back when Jenner graced the cover of Vanity Fair, the former Olympian described a panic attack following the transition.

The Vanity Fair profile detailed: “During the first full day of recuperation… She was undergoing something that had never happened before in 65 years of life: a panic attack… The panic attack lasted about 15 seconds, but a single thought continued to course through her mind: ‘What did I just do? What did I just do to myself?’” (Great question!)

So, 2 lessons here…

#1. Don’t worry; don’t panic.

#2. Certainly, don’t worry, don’t panic over your sex change.

Trans.]

So, the pressures of life tempt us to worry, fret, become anxious.

God says, “Don’t do that.  Don’t be anxious. Don’t worry.   Do this instead…”

And that leads us to…

  1. The Pressures.
  2. The Prayer – we are to pray.

Again, we read in…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

There is obviously a contrast here.

“Don’t do this; instead do this.”  “Don’t worry, don’t fret, don’t be all anxious; but rather… pray!”

Here is the choice.

This is where “the rubber meets the road.”

Are we going to handle the pressures of life the way this world does, or are we going to do something very different, something the world will only do as a very last resort.

Quote]- Let me read to you about a pilot, from Charles Swindoll’s book, Growing Strong in the Seasons of Life:  (“Commence prayer”) – p. 273…]

So, is prayer the first thing you do, or a last resort?

Quote] I once heard someone say this:  “It is impossible to worry and pray at the same time.”

It is impossible to worry and pray (sincerely, with trust) at the same time.

Now we may “fly into God’s presence” with a “foxhole prayer,” but that is not really a genuine request for God to take control.

It reminds me of a…

ILL.] Movie “The Dove;” true story about a 17-year-old (Robin Graham) who sails around the world.  At one point he is in a terrible storm, getting pounded by waves, and the main mast has broken off; he cries, “Help me God, …Jesus, …anybody!”

That is the kind of praying we do sometimes.  We may be praying but we are not trusting. When prayer does involve trust, then prayer contrasts worry, and we cannot do both at the same time.

Look at this verse again…

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything (which means “everything,” the big stuff & the little stuff) by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;

There are some different words here – prayer, supplication, thanksgiving, making requests.

* prayer – this is simply coming into the presence of God and talking to Him, but carries with it the idea of adoration, devotion, and worship.

I.e., we should always acknowledge God for who He is instead of just “flying into His presence” with our request.

* supplication – this is the earnest, ongoing sharing of our what is on our heart, continuing to go to God with our problems and our requests.

* with thanksgiving – this is giving thanks, expressing appreciation, to God, in faith that He is going to come through for us.

ILL.] For example, we go to a fast-food place and order something and say “Thanks” because they took our money and we are empty-handed – no, because we are assured of receiving the merchandise.

-> Here we are dealing with a promise, not wishful thinking.  We can be so confident of God’s peace (verse 7) that we go ahead and thank Him.

And finally…

* let your requests be made known to God – this is giving it to the Lord, as we said earlier in…

1 Peter 5:7 Casting all your care upon him; for he cares for you. (where cast literally means to hurl your care on Him.)

ILL.] This is like carrying a burden, praying, but never letting the Lord have it.  [Have a volunteer play God but don’t let them have the burden…]

We have to give it God.

Trans.]

When we do let the Lord have it, notice…

  1. The Pressures.
  2. The Prayer.
  3. The Peace – that God provides.

We read…

* and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding,  It rises above, is superior to, it surpasses understanding.  It is supernatural, beyond human comprehension.

Jesus said in…

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

We find this in…

Isaiah 26:3 You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.

Now catch this last part… (the peace of God…)

* will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

“will guard” is a military word.  It means “to protect,” “to stand as a sentry.”

ILL.] => as a soldier guards the camp, or a building, against an intruder, so God’s peace lowers his spear and guards our hearts and minds against the intrusions of anxiety, fear, and worry.  He says, “No further!”

ILLUSTRATE with volunteers…]

What a beautiful picture!

Closing Illustration…]

David and prescriptions – Philippians 4:6-7 – “you need to get this filled.”

This passage addresses…

  1. The Pressures – of life which bring anxiety.
  2. The Prayer – we are to pray, and…
  3. The Peace – that God provides.

Prayer]

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