I love quoting Phil 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Likewise,1 John 4:12&13, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.” However,these words become hollow if we live with fear and anxiety in our lives. Fear and anxiety rupture “I can do all things” and “This is the confidence” and are the antithesis of faith and courage. My testimony is an example of this. For many years, I allowed fear and anxiety to shrink my world.
Never forget the acrostic of fear because it is absolutely true….…False Evidence Appearing Real. Satan is the great illusionist, masquerader, and deceiver. 2 Corinthians 11:3, 14, “But I am afraid that just as Eve was deceived by the serpent’s cunning, your minds may somehow be led astray from your sincere and pure devotion to Christ… 14 And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. How does the devil deceive, masquerade, and construct an illusion? He deceives through false teaching whether it is an egotistical professor, teacher, or preacher. He builds illusions in false narratives, gossip shows, and productions “based on truth” which are actually built on lies. He masquerades what good and right is when all along the good and right highlighted is categorized as ungodly in the scripture. He knows our addictions and feeds on our lusts whether it be of the eye, the flesh or the pride of life (1 John 2:16). He takes us back to our family of origins which were without expressed love and acceptance misinterpreting hurt and raw feelings telling us that we are failures and rejects. Many of us keep these feelings throughout our lives. Others have had hurtful, even brutal experiences in their background. As a result, bitterness, insecurities, and unforgiveness reside in our lives producing anxiety and fear. Deception and fear cause personal and family downfall and arguments that split God’s people and churches.
Ephesians 5:16 states the devil is driven to seize our minds with “the flaming arrows of the evil one.” 1 Peter 5:9 powerfully and accurately describes the approach of the devil as he “prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” The purpose of the roar of the lion is to paralyze a weak foe with the desire to devour it. How many of us today have been burned emotionally, mentally and spiritually, damaged by the penetration of the devil’s flaming arrows deep into our souls? How many of us right now are paralyzed by his noise?
Philippians 4:6&7 is a powerful, antidotal, anti-ballistic, and a noise inhibitor against the devil. “6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” D-O N-O-T B-E A-N-X-I-O-U-S A-B-O-U-T A-N-Y-T-H-I-N-G! Stop, drop, and roll if you are on fire from a flaming dart from the devil. Paul the Apostle tells us to immediately “pray and petition with thanksgiving presenting our request to God.” Pray placing and leaving these anxieties and fears in His capable hands. Then, thank Him that He has taken care of these on your behalf. You can trust Him totally that He’s got you covered. God is more than capable of taking care of the devil and his minions. Do not let your emotions, the weakest part of your being tell you otherwise. His peace will guard you. Colossians 2:15 declares, “And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.” Jesus kicked the devil’s butt and still is. Stand in this victory and do not let the devil tell you otherwise
Now that you have presented things to and trusted in God, fill yourself up with His thoughts. “I will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on me” (Isaiah 26:3). Paul tells us what to think on. Philippians 4:8 states, “8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Then, Paul tells us to P-R-A-C-T-I-C-E what we have learned and received and heard from him. Philippians 4:9 instructs us, “Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” Live out God’s word moment-by-moment daily. His word is “alive and active sharper than a two-edge sword.” Base your life on the power, grace, mercy, and compassion of God. If so, you will live in peace.