Philippians 4:6-7 starts out with two commands. The first order is to the point, “Be anxious for nothing.” The second order commands is, “In everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.”
Not only are we commanded to set aside all worry, but we are also instructed to make our requests known to God, through prayer, with a thankful heart.
It is so hard to do this, and I completely understand if you are having a hard time of it but we are commanded to cast our worries aside. I sat down this evening with my Pastor and explained a bombshell that happened to me today. Someone sent me an email and it literally made me fall off my chair. Anger swept over me as I read it and so did fear but after prayer I knew to “be still” and to “cast all worries aside”.
Usually, prayer requests are dusted with a measure of anxiety, sorrow, concern, or even fear. I often times have hit my knees with tears in my eyes or even anxiety so offering up supplications with a thankful heart is possible even if you are under stress. Always remember with whom we are speaking. The Creator of the universe is bending down to listen to the cries of His children. He knows all, sees all, is all, and is everywhere, all at once.
“When life gives you more than you can stand, KNEEL.”
“Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through
Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)
God’s power is beyond our comprehension. He knows what we need and what we will request before we can even begin to mention them in prayer. He has demonstrated His unconditional love for us by sending His son, Jesus, to die for our sins. He is the “Star Breather” and a God of miracles. He calls each star by name and causes the sun and moon to rise and set. This is why we need not be anxious! He is mighty! In fact, the word mighty is unable to define and express His true power.
The many stories of faith recorded in the Bible are there to encourage us. Joshua had such faith in the Lord that after five kingdoms had been delivered into his hands; he called out to God asking him to stop the sun and moon in order for him to completely destroy the enemies of God’s people. God actually heeded the voice of a man!
“Then Joshua spoke to the Lord in the day when the Lord delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel, and he said in the sight of Israel:
“Sun, stand still over Gibeon; and Moon, in the Valley of Aijalon.”
So the sun stood still, and the moon stopped, till the people had revenge upon their enemies. Is this not written in the Book of Jasher? So the sun stood still in the midst of heaven, and did not hasten to go down for about a whole day. And there has been no day like that, before it or after it, that the Lord heeded the voice of a man; for the Lord fought for Israel. (Joshua 10:12-14 NKJV)
We are told that if we have a faith as small as a mustard seed we can move mountains. And yet, we limit what God can accomplish through us when we continuously mull over our fears, feed our hopelessness, and encourage anxiety, which then causes doubt. Doubt hinders God’s power.
Faith has a lot to do with your ability to pray effectively. If you believe God saved Jonah by sending a big fish his way, why can’t you believe He will send the help you have requested? With a prayer of faith, you can set aside all of your anxieties.
Comparing your faith to that of Noah, Moses, and Joshua may discourage you. Instead, why not let it encourage you to mature and grow your faith? Use these examples to spur you on, making you all the more resolved to trust God with all of your anxious prayer requests. Someone wisely said, “Let Go and Let God.” Let the Lord take your anxious prayers filled with worry and fear, and work His wonders in His perfect time.
“So Jesus said to them, “Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20 (NKJV)
“Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil. “
Psalm 37:8 (NIV)