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Above all, I wish you peace.

Thanksgiving week, 2022. It is early as I write, the house is quiet, even the dogs are sleeping. I can hear the hens vying for position to lay their eggs in the new sought-after place: a large pot which boasts a luscious yellow rosebush; of late, the new laying place. Go figure. After spending time in Psalms 100 and 103 and praying this morning, I am thinking about thanks-giving, as I look with anticipation upon this week. Certainly, David talked about thanking God, but so did other writers of Scripture. Take the beloved apostle Paul who wrote some powerful words to the church at Philippi. Many of us are familiar with these verses and I believe we love them because of the peace that is promised, but there is something else here... so step a little closer please.

These blessed words of Paul I first memorized in the King's English—“Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4.6-7, King James Version One more look from a different translation: Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus. NLT Thanking God is part of the equation for peace, Paul indicates. Hmmm... Thanksgiving week is upon us when many around the world will stop to be thankful, but "thanks" giving is not a one-day-a-year holiday tradition! No, instead it is meant to be a daily way of life. But only if peace is important to us, only if it is our desire to obey God. Huh, I realize obeying God is not at the top of everyone's list. . . and yet, topping the list for most everyone is inner peace. I mean, no one desires to live from a racing, divided, worried mind, right? So this is worth consideration. Mind you, Paul writes from prison, probably hungry and in physical pain, yet gives this great instruction of which I simply cannot get enough: Do not be anxious about anything--do not worry! but in every situation, pray with thanksgiving, presenting your requests to God. And the peace of God, which is beyond what the human mind can understand, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. What concerns you? What is causing you stress? Is there anything breaking your heart? Take it to God in prayer - all of it: what it is, how you feel about it, what concerns you, tell him your great need . . . go ahead . . . do it now! and then, give God thanks. Why should you thank Him? Once you have prayed, He is at work on your behalf! Look what Jesus said: My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.1 Whether or not you see what God is doing, your Father is at work. He who watches over you will not slumber2 You can rest assured and be at peace, because God has got you. He has heard your cry, understood the magnitude and complexity of your situation. And nothing is too great for him. But remember - after you pray - give God thanks. Frequently I carry pain in my body, especially my back, following two bad car accidents---but when I think about all of the other functioning parts of my body and thank God for those, it changes things, reminds me of the many parts of me that are working great! Causes me to be thankful. Perhaps as you think of things outside your control, you will remember the privilege you have of taking everything to God in prayer, asking him to go to work on your behalf. Then, thank him and walk in his peace. Throwing it back to Andre Crouch, My Tribute: Giving God thanks changes us~ Christine 1 - John 5.17 2 - Psalm 121.4 - but dive into Psalm 121... what a treasure.

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