Peace beyond understanding
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 every situation, 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. Philippians 4:4-7
The Lord Jesus Christ did not promise His children a life of ease; a life free from heartache and pain. What He promised is that He will always be near us. From the text, Paul is urging Christians to be known as people who are joyful. Their joy is not dependent on circumstances but in the knowledge that no matter what they are going through in life they know that God is with them. Joy resides not on the circumstances of life but in the presence of God. “Though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me” (Psalm 23:4). We can rejoice even in difficult times for Christ is the Lord of our lives. One of the ways that joy is demonstrated is by exhibiting gentleness to all. Gentleness becomes visible when we do not lose our patience during times of trials. Instead, we follow Christ’s example who said, “Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:29). The ability to rejoice replaces anxiousness and worries. Focusing on the Lord will lead us to pray and this will prevent us to be anxious. We get frenzy in times of trials because there is a lack of trust in God. God wants us to experience the peace that “transcends all understanding.” This peace is the result of coming to God in prayer and thanking Him for His presence and provision. The peace of God is what will guard our hearts and will disquiet us from worry and fret. This is the result of continued dependence and reliance upon God. Just like Paul, no matter how difficult and how uncertain life will be, we could rejoice and be content for we know that God is with us. “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).
Noel De Guzman