“Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.” Philippians 4:11-12.
Over the last couple of years, the world has been going through severe economic and geopolitical upheaval. These include extremely high unemployment, inflation, devaluing of retirement savings, coups, rebellions in many countries, a pandemic, and the list goes on. So many are experiencing high levels of stress which is causing physical and emotional health issues. I have spoken to many who are having problems sleeping, needing medication in order to finally get the rest they need. Many are struggling to make ends meet, while others are experiencing hopelessness, not believing there will be any way things will get better.
And a sad thing is even Christians are suffering these things. I can understand non-Christians who have nowhere to go but to themselves or other men and women. However, we Christians have the Almighty God on our side. In addition, He has made many promises to us in His Word that we can hold fast to, knowing they will come to pass. If we could just grasp the concept that God is sovereign, and that everything that happens is because He allows it, and that He loves us and wants the best for us, we would be able to live a victorious life no matter our circumstances. What I would like to do with this post is list out and discuss a few of these promises, in the hope those of you who are not at peace due to your situation, no matter what they are, can meditate on these scriptures and find the comfort and peace that only God can provide.
“Therefore, I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Therefore, do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear? For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:25,31-33. God knows what we need even before we ask. If we but focus our lives on Him and not on ourselves, if we look to the betterment of others before ourselves, we will have all our needs provided. However, we need to distinguish between actual needs and assumed needs. Food is an actual need; however, lobster and filet mignon are assumed needs. Clothing is an actual need; however, Louis Vuitton and Gucci are assumed needs. In addition, while I am at it, a cell phone may feel like a need, but is it really?
“Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’” Hebrews 13:5. We never have to worry about God forsaking us. We can be free from worry knowing that He is always with us and watching over us. We can rely on that for as Christians, we have the Holy Spirit residing in us. We can always go to Him when we are weak, and He will help us and give us the peace that can only come from the Prince of Peace. What a wonderful promise. We are never alone, and we never go through our trials alone.
“You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.” Isaiah 26:3 God has promised that if we keep our minds focused on Him and not on our circumstances, or ourselves He will keep us in perfect peace. It is better to be broke and at peace then to have millions of dollars and have no peace. It is better to live in a small room and be at peace then in a mansion with no peace.
These are only three of the many passages with the promise that we do not have to worry or be concerned about our circumstances. When we run into trials or hard times, we need to remember all these passages and trust that God knows what He is doing in allowing this to happen. God is sovereign and all loving. A combination like that cannot fail. Since He is sovereign, He can place us where He wants. Francis Schaeffer in his book True Spirituality says, “Then surely when I lack trust, I am denying what I say I believe. At the same time, I say there is a battle in the universe, and God is God. If I lack trust, what I am really doing is denying in practice that He has a right, as my God, to use me where He wants in the spiritual battles that exists in the seen and unseen world.” God has the right to allow anything He wants to come our way. In addition, it is up to us to trust that He has our best interest at heart and that He will be with us through it all. It is only then we can be content no matter what our circumstances. In this contentment comes peace, which passes all understanding. Please let me know what you think. If you have something to add to this, please do not hesitate to comment on this post. This will begin a discussion that will allow us both to build each other up, as iron sharpens iron.