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 (56)

56 thoughts on "Practical Counsel"

  1. K D says:

    Amen and Amen!

  2. Patsy Franklin says:

    I have struggled with worry this week over health issues. I’m 77 and this body is wearing out, faster than I’m ready! But the day before I went to the doctor, I was reminded that my pastor—who loves to sing— sings songs or hymns to the Lord to give Him praise in worshiping in his quiet time. So rather than trying to sing, I pulled up lots of beautiful music sung by David Phelps, a Baylor grad trained in music, and I sang along with him. I felt the worry fading away and peace flooding in! God reminded me He has a plan for my life and He will hold my hand every step of the way! By the way, even though I have painful arthritis, that was a better diagnosis than I was expecting and shots have helped. So why did I worry? Because I didn’t trust enough that My Lord and Savior was in charge and would carry me through whatever lies ahead!

  3. Lauren G says:

    This came at the perfect time today. Another worry came up today to pile onto an already high heap of worries.
    Thankful for the reminder to stop, take in the goodness of God around me despite the challenges, and to remember that God will provide for us one day at a time!

  4. Laci Lane says:

    If Paul can rejoice from a prison cell, I can rejoice from where I am, too! I need to ingrain this passage on my heart. ❤️

  5. Katelyn M says:

    I’ve been so anxious lately and these last few days God has been so gracious towards me – putting His Truth right in my face over and over. God is good! And He is bigger than my fears and the lies the enemy tells me!

  6. Michaela Presser says:

    So often I get stuck in the “I have so much to do” mode that I really do forget to rejoice. I forget that God has already given me what I need for this day to make a day of rejoicing and being thankful, I seem to put more on myself because I forget the importance of just trusting and letting God do in me and through me what he has planned for that day. So for today I ask God to help me to keep my eyes on him and not the things around me. To focus on rejoicing in the little things that I do instead of dreading the next thing.

    God has given us the ability and the grace to all things.

  7. Vicki Judd says:

    Several years ago, our family faced a heartbreaking season. As I cried out to the Lord in prayer, the phrase, “the Lord is near” kept coming to mind. I knew it was scripture, but couldn’t remember where. Throughout that season Philippians 4 was a balm to my soul. No matter what we face, the Lord is near.

    1. Jen Brewer says:

      Amen Vicki. Thanks for sharing ❤️

  8. Kristi Jones says:

    God’s word and message is right on time, always. I’m worried and anxious about a situation out of my control. I know to pray and give it to God but as a human in the flesh that is easier said than done. Thankful for the peace that only comes from above.

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