This day, we remember.
This day, let the peace of God guard our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
The following has been inspired by the many thoughts that surround the events and memories of 9/11, some edifying quotes I’ve stumbled upon, and our pastor’s message on Philippians 4:4-9.
Ten years later. Are we changed?
Are we characterized by the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, or by worry and fear? The aim of terrorists is to instill fear. The aim of the Gospel is to inspire peace–true and lasting peace.
According to Philippians 4:4-9, peace comes through praise, prayer, purity, and practice.
“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone.”
In the worst of times we have the best of God to rejoice in!
Then you are a child of God this evening. God is your Father. No change of circumstances can ever rob you of that. Even if by loss, you are brought to poverty and stripped bare, you can still say,’God is my Father. In my Father’s house are many rooms, therefore I will not be troubled’. You have another permanent blessing, namely the love of Jesus Christ. He Who is God and man loves you with all the strength of His affectionate nature: nothing can effect that. …. Our best portion and richest heritage we cannot lose. Charles Spurgeon
“The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God,which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
In times of trouble, do we seek God first, and do we seek God more than the answer(s) to our prayers? These are questions my heart has pondered much lately. The answer stays the same. God wants all of us to want Him more than anything else!
Dr. Jack Hayford, experienced pastor and hymn writer has written that if we are in the middle of a bad day, we should aim our questions at God first, not man. He said this because even though counselors may analyze and friends may empathsize, they still have finite minds. He finishes by saying that when we really hurt, “we truly cry for God Himself, not answers”.
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”
What have we been meditating on? The following quote has greatly encouraged me to switch my thoughts to purer, lovelier, more praiseworthy things. Posting this quote for your edification is so much easier than putting it to practice, but practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you (and me!).
“But I do know that in our times of deepest affliction, none of us find comfort by endlessly focusing on that suffering. There is an element of mystery in all our suffering and in this life we can’t fully understand it. Yet there is the subtle temptation to relive and review our suffering. That is an excercise that will never bring rest and release. What will bring rest and release is spending more time meditating on the Cross and the God of the Cross.” C.J.Mahaney (from his book The Cross Centered Life)
Perhaps we fear that redirecting our thoughts could cause us to forget or grow callous. I don’t think that’s why we have these verses. Redirecting out thoughts to lovelier and purer things like Christ and the Gospel, actually helps us to remember them better and without fear. (2 Timothy 1:7) Can we look at the reality of our brokenness and see the beauty of Christ and His promise of peace. (John 14:27)
I was hoping to post today’s sermon but it has not yet been released. I will keep checking my church’s website often in hopes of blessing you with it soon. And you can now find it here!
The above quotes were found at Susanstudy’s Blog.
Thank you for your time and visit!
“The God of peace be with you all. Amen.” ~Romans 15:33