When I was a teenager, I was so anxious that I had an ulcer at 14 years old. I had surrendered my life to Jesus at the age of 12, but I didn’t yet know that peace was a part of my inheritance. If fact, I used to eat TUMS like candy because my stomach was so upset because of my anxiety. One day, I learned about this verse at church and everything changed. I couldn't believe that there was something in the Bible that could be so specific for me.
6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7
I didn’t completely understand the verse and I wasn’t sure what supplication was... but I knew that it said that I could exchange my anxiety for peace.
When I was anxious, I would repeat this verse. I believe that although I didn’t understand, it was working and God was guarding my heart. I did know what thanksgiving was and I began to work on thanking God for what He was doing instead of complaining about what He wasn’t. Don't get me wrong, I was still pretty good at whining when things didn't go my way, but slowly my mind was being transformed.
Little did I know that I was literally transforming my mind... as in, I was creating new neural pathways or ruts in my brain. As I began to really believe in the goodness of God, my mind started looking for His goodness in my world. Do you know what I found? I found that He is really, really that good. He is actually better than good.
About a year ago I started doing something very naturally when I would become overwhelmed with decisions or feelings... I would close my eyes, take a deep breath, smile and then say “Holy Spirit come”.
I started to notice that
1. Peace would overcome me and I would feel relaxed.
2. The Holy Spirit always came
3. I could think more clearly and decisions that only moments before were overwhelming seemed very easy to make.
This is the peace that transcends understanding. Ah, not only have I found it, but I can access that PEACE at anytime, because the Prince of Peace lives inside of me.
Coaching Challenge: Try it every time you think of it for a week. After your week, come back here and tell us how it went.
Close your eyes, Take a DEEP breath, SMILE, and invite the Holy Spirit to come.