"Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." Phillipians 4:4-7
I have noticed, for some time now, that I am a complainer. Give me something to gripe or worry about, and I'm on it. Yet, it's not the way that I WANT to be. There is a woman in my lifegroup who is so filled with joy. Her circumstances have not been easy, yet she sees God through it all. Every time I look at her, I see God's sweet joy on her face. I want to hang out with her just to soak up some of that joy. I was thinking about it this morning as I was doing my quiet time. The verses above stuck out to me in many ways.
I love that he repeats "Rejoice!" twice...that usually means it's a big deal. Paul is writing this letter in jail. There is not much to rejoice about in jail, but Paul has the knowledge of knowing Jesus. His heart is at peace even though his circumstances seem dim. Life for me is surprisingly dull compared to Paul, yet sometimes I catch my heart in the woes me stage. (I'm incredibly talented at it, mind you...ask my husband). The part that I need to remember in the good and the bad is to rejoice, because I have Jesus. The other part that stuck out with me was the in everything, by prayer and petition, with THANKSGIVING, present your requests to God. I have read this verse a hundred times, and that part never jumped out at me before today. Rejoice and be thankful...I'd like to get on board with that.
Lord, thank you for always shining a light on the areas that I am weak...not to condemn, but to guide. Help me to rejoice in all my circumstances and to be THANKFUL always for ALL that you do for me. I love you Lord.