“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near. Do not worry 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. Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” —Philippians 4:4-8
Norman Vincent Peale once wrote about the Power of Positive Thinking. He believed that simply having a good attitude about things could improve your circumstances.
It has never quite worked that well for me. Trying to drum up a positive attitude can prove to be difficult. I’m a “hope for the best, plan for the worst” kind of a guy, so it is fairly difficult for me to try and find the “positive angle” on difficult situations.
The Apostle Paul, took this idea of positive thinking to a deeper level. For Paul it wasn’t about looking for the positive angle in life, rather, it was about finding God in all situations. “Rejoice in the Lord!” We can rejoice in all situations because we believe and trust that God is Lord over all situations. There is nothing that we will ever face that God cannot use for our eternal good!
It is in this scenario that we can lay aside our worries, and with thanksgiving trust God to meet our needs! It is in this scenario that no storm can threaten us, for we rejoice in the Lord of the storm! “Rejoice in the Lord, always; again I will say, Rejoice!”
Homework this week:
Find the book Prison to Praise by Merlin Carothers. It’s short, and worth your time. Find the song I Am Ready For The Storm by Rich Mullins on iTunes, it’s cheap and worth your time.