Day 11

Practical Counsel

from the Philippians reading plan


Philippians 4:2-9, Matthew 6:25-34, John 15:7-11, Romans 8:5-6

BY Guest Writer

Company was coming to town, the house was in disarray, I had mounds of laundry and cooking before me, and I was apologizing to my 10-year-old daughter for being impatient. She gave me a hug and said, “Mom, look at the things you have finished, not the things you haven’t.” In essence, the Lord was graciously reminding me, through my daughter, to “rejoice in the Lord always”—in everything—even while in the midst of a list of to-dos (Philippians 4:4).

As daughters of the King, rather than living in worry and fear, we can rejoice in “the riches of his grace that he richly poured out on us with all wisdom and understanding” (Ephesians 1:8–9). I don’t know about you, but so often, I live in and wrestle with worry. When I hear that command to rejoice, I fall into discouragement because I know my life’s not marked by rejoicing. Paul was in prison when he wrote “Rejoice!” So why can’t I rejoice where I am today? I spin my wheels trying to figure out how to cultivate a life of joy and peace. Today’s reading reminds me that the answers to how we live this life of faith are found in God’s Word.

God knows how to bring us peace because He is the God of peace (Philippians 4:9). He knows what will bring us true joy. He is always near, and so there’s no reason to worry; His peace will guard our hearts and minds (vv.5–9).

We cannot add one moment to our days by worrying, and so we are to set our minds on the Spirit, who offers us “life and peace” (Matthew 6:27; Romans 8:6). Whatever is true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, commendable—these are the things we should dwell on (Philippians 4:8). All of these things and more we are able to receive through His Spirit and His Word; He uses both to draw us to Himself.

Will we continue to worry, to set our minds on things of the flesh? Yes, we may always struggle with that. But we are saved by grace, works in progress; the One who’s begun a good work in us will carry it on to completion (Philippians 1:6). And that is truly a great cause for rejoicing, because “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:12). Wherever we find ourselves today—even in dark seasons and in overwhelming situations—we can rest in Him and rejoice because the gospel is true.

Kimberly Girard is a well-loved child of God, wife of an extraordinary man, mother of three amazing kids, and writer living in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. You can find her at Loud Singing and on Twitter.

Post Comments (52)

52 thoughts on "Practical Counsel"

  1. Bobbie B says:

    These words are golden to me today. Focus on all the good that surrounds me. God is very present.

  2. Karen says:

    I love Philippians and this lesson came in such a timely way considering all the panic and anxiety that is spreading across our nation and world right now with this virus. As I read through Phil 4:7, I tried to write it out in a different way to help emphasize the meaning.

    God gives us specific directions on how to present any request we have to Him:
    with prayer
    with petition
    with thanksgiving.

    When we do that, His gift to us is

    Peace
    Transcending
    Understanding

    All of which will
    Guard
    Hearts
    Minds

    May each of you be blesses during this season of your life with the overwhelming and undeniable peace and love of our Lord Jesus Christ!

  3. Rebecca Barsaloh says:

    This was so good to read today. Considering the craziness in the world right now it’s very easy for my mind to worry about those things. My assurance is in Him not in the world and sometimes I need the reminder.

  4. Rayana Swanson says:

    Definitely needed this today ❤️ I struggle with making my own future plans for my life and then getting anxious when God has other plans. I just have to continue to trust him through the process because he knows me best.

  5. Susan Crosby says:

    I have several close family members who struggle with anxiety. At times their lives are overcome by anxiety and worry. I have come to understand their struggle to be based in fear. Just fear in every aspect of their everyday life…so much so that they don’t function well. I don’t experience this same overwhelming anxiety as a habit of life issue but when I do I say to myself oh ye of little faith. Because of Him we can let go and let Him❤️

  6. Camille English Davis says:

    “I urge Euodia and Syntyche to agree in the Lord.” My message today was to give up the need to be right…Focus on agreement of Jesus Christ, our blessed Savior and wonderful Redeemer.

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