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DAILY DEVOTIONAL – Thursday, April 16, 2015
It seems strange that a man in prison would be telling a church to rejoice. But Paul’s attitude teaches us an important lesson: Our inner attitudes do not have to reflect our outward circumstances. Paul was full of joy because he knew that no matter what happened to him, Jesus Christ was with him. Several times in this letter Paul urged the Philippians to be joyful, probably because they needed to hear this. It’s easy to get discouraged about unpleasant circumstances or to take unimportant events too seriously. If you haven’t been joyful lately, you may not be looking at life from the right perspective.
God’s peace is different from the world’s peace. True peace is not found in positive thinking, in absence of conflict, or in good feelings. It comes from knowing that God is in control. Our citizenship in Christ’s Kingdom is sure, our destiny is set, and we can have victory over sin. Let God’s peace guard your heart against anxiety. (NLT)
Philippians 4:4-9 – Always be full of joy in the Lord, I say it again—rejoice! Let everyone see that you are considerate in all you do. Remember, the Lord is coming soon.
Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.
And now, dear brothers and sisters, let me say one more thing as I close this letter. Fix your thoughts on what is true and honorable and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and heard from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you.
Don’t be anxious about anything; rather, bring up all of your requests to God in your prayers and petitions, along with giving thanks. – Philippians 4:6 (CEB)
Phil Cages (Alaska) gave good advice in his story titled “FOCUS ON JESUS;” here is a portion of Phil’s story:
“For 14 years I worked in a sporting goods store in Anchorage, Alaska. One day as I was coming from the warehouse to deliver a few items to the store, an irate customer met me when I walked through the store entrance. She was livid and began a tirade of complaints about a previous purchase. As I listened to her, I noticed that she was wearing a T-shirt with ‘Focus on Jesus’ written on the front. I thought to myself: Lady, you are one big hypocrite. The Holy Spirit immediately brought me up short saying, ‘Are you going to lose your focus on Jesus, too?’
“With a sigh, I admitted that my focus was more than a little blurry. I began to pray silently for the woman. Before I knew it, I felt God’s peace and she regained her composure. She left as a satisfied customer, and I enjoyed God’s peace in a way I never had before. . .”
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY – Peace is only a prayer away.
Prayer: We thank you, dear God, for peace that you give in the midst of troubling moments. Help us call to you at such times so that we can be a channel of your love and understanding. Amen.
Prayer Focus: CHRISTIANS IN THE MARKETPLACE
To read the rest of the story in The Upper Room, click on the following link: http://devotional.upperroom.org/
For more Helpful Inspirational Material:
SPIRITUAL GIFTS: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-gifts/
ABILITY, ABILITIES: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/ability-abilities/
SPIRITUAL GROWTH: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/spiritual-growth/
RESPOND, RESPONSE: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/respond-response/
ABUSE, ABUSES, ABUSING: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/abuse-abuses-abusing/
SUFFERING, SUFFER: https://helpfulinspirationalblog.wordpress.com/suffering-suffer/
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