Do not be anxious or worried about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, continue to make your requests known to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, stands guard over your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
There is much in this world that can cause worry and stress even for those who seem to be always cool and calm. Some feel the stress of financial obligations they cannot meet. Others worry because they do not know where their next meal will come from. Sometimes the person who appears to have every material thing one could want is troubled due to the stress of maintaining such a lifestyle, worried that one day it all could be lost. The fact remains that there is no true peace to be found in this world. Tranquility and stability are not things that it has to offer us. What we crave is peace in all areas of our lives. Our avenue to peace, true peace, is communion with God through prayer.
When we pray, an exchange occurs. God desires to take on and remove from us those things which trouble our hearts and souls. At a foundational level, the troubles we may experience in this world have been overcome by Jesus Christ already. There is nothing we can encounter that is so great that God cannot replace our anxiety and worry with peace. When we come to him in faith, He is faithful to grant this to us. A common therapeutic instruction to those undergoing stress is to let it out and vocalize it. This is no surprise as today’s scripture instructs us to pray our concerns to God so that He may grant us relief. We do not need to feel worry or anxiety. We do not need to deal with stress. Our Father in heaven offers us the opportunity to engage with him in the discourse of prayer and give him our troubles in exchange for relief.
When you are nervous that you do not know what tomorrow will bring, take that to God in prayer. When you are scared that you will not be able to meet the expectations you carry in life, take that to God in prayer. When you are anxious because you do not know how you will be able to meet your financial obligations, take that to God in prayer. He will take your trouble and grant you relief. He does not give as the world gives, but He gives his brand of genuine peace. It is incomprehensible, everlasting and pure. We cannot understand this peace, but we certainly can receive it and walk in it. Father, teach us to bring our worries and fears to You in faithful expectation that You will exchange them for peace and tranquility.