Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Lectionary 28 A - Philippians 4:1-9

Philippians 4:1-9
“Do not be anxious about anything” is a tall order in a world where anxiety producing events abound. From Ebola to the Islamic State to the persistent drought in California to ice caps melting and ocean temperatures rising to Russian aggression in the Ukraine to a weakened world economy the worry list goes on and on. But truth to be told we are fragile creatures on a fragile planet and we have in many ways always been at risk. Which is why Paul follows up “don’t be anxious” with an exhortation to give God your anxious thoughts through prayer and petition trusting that God is intimately aware of our deepest needs. “The Lord is near.” And if we follow his advice in the second chapter of this letter – let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus – then our minds let go of anxious thoughts in favor of the things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy. It's not simply the power of positive thinking. It is the peace of God that dispels anxiety when one realizes the Lord is near and has written our names in the book of life with a permanent marker. So do not be anxious about anything is not simply the power of positive thinking – it is the faithful response to trusting one's heart and mind is guarded in Christ Jesus.

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