A Spiritual Solution
It is instructive, even frightening, how many people in the
relatively peaceful and prosperous western world suffer from
mental health issues. These include anxiety, excessive stress, and
depression. Even those who claim to be believers and attend church
are not exempted from these things. Of course, if the root cause
of this malaise is spiritual, then the solution will be equally
God offers a spiritual solution: it is peace - His peace -
and available to any and all who will receive it. Once received,
the mental health issues clear up, wholeness is gained, and joy
returns. Like the Ďpearl of great priceí, Godís peace is worth
everything to obtain and will not disappoint.
So far, we learned that the pre-requisite to peace is to
recognise that it comes from Jesus. All the Lord asks is that
before we receive peace, we make a decision to cooperate with Him
to refuse to let our heart be troubled or afraid. (John 14:27)
The second thing we learned is to establish a beachhead of
Godís peace, we have to be reconciled to God by the new birth.
This comes by believing in the gospel of Christ: He died for our
sins, was buried, and rose again the third day, according to the
Scriptures. In other words, you canít have Godís peace until you
are willing to receive in your heart the Prince of Peace, Jesus
Christ, as Saviour and Lord. When this happens, we are justified
by faith (not by religious works) and have peace with God through
our Lord Jesus Christ.
God offers a Ďpeace processí. Unlike the worldly version,
which comes in instalments and can be incomplete and temporal at
best, Godís peace comes freely, fully, and permanently. We can and
should grow in Godís peace, as we do in Godís grace, glory, and
The next step is important. Godís peace can be likened to
a personal body guard. Any force that would try to harm you or
cause you to fret and worry can be thwarted. This protective,
prevailing peace will guard your mind - which can be a battle
field of negative, anxious thought. It will guard your heart, from
which flow the issues of life. Prevailing peace means that no
challenge will go unmet and no challenge will succeed - Godís
peace will prevail against any and all attacks. When you are
peaceful in heart and mind, nothing can rock your boat.
How do we obtain Godís protective, prevailing peace? We
learn about it in Philippians 4:6-7 (KJV): ďBe careful for
nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7And the
peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your
hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.Ē
So here is the secret to growing in the prevailing,
protective peace of God: it comes through prayer. Like the air we
breathe, prayer is indispensable for Christian life and growth.
Without a lifestyle of prayer, you will become weak like any other
man. Great people of God have said: A prayer less Christian is a
If you have the desire to be a person of prayer, but find
it difficult to get started, here are two things you can do. 1)
Read about prayer: in the Bible and also Christian literature.
There are plenty of books on the subject. More importantly, 2)
Find an Ďon-fireí prayer meeting, attend it regularly, and remain
a part of it until you catch the fire!
Even before you pray, or at least when you pray, make sure
you follow the first part of the advice: Be careful for nothing.
Make a decision that you will not worry or fret about anything.
This will require Godís grace, of course, but hand the burden to
God, let Him do all the heavy lifting, and then proceed to pray.
Note Philippians 4 speaks of prayer (a broad term about
seeking God in faith and utterance), supplication (where we make
our requests to God), and thanksgiving. The latter is essential
because, like people, God responds very well to an Ďattitude of
gratitudeí (I Thessalonians 5:18).
In summary, hand your burdens to God, pray all kinds of
prayers, give thanks to God in everything.
Years ago I wonderfully learned this lesson. Flying from
my first ever visit to the Middle East, the airline gave me an
obligatory stop in London - at my expense. Twenty-two years old,
with little money, having been informed that ĎLondon is expensiveí
and Ďall the hotel rooms are full,í I contemplated sleeping on the
seats at Heathrow Airport. In fact, on the plane I started to feel
distressed and anxious. Then I remember Philippians 4:6-7. I
wanted to shout it from the housetops, but that would not be
appropriate in flight. So I found the one place that would afford
me privacy - the lavatory on the plane - and confessed to the
LORD: Heavenly Father, I claim the promise of Philippians 4:6-7.
When I walk out of this place, I thank you that I will experience
your protective, prevailing peace on my heart and mind. In Jesusí
Without exaggeration, once I opened the door, the peace of
God descended upon me. The worry and fear were gone. Once I
arrived in London, everything fell into place, I found a clean,
quaint, and affordable hotel room for the night and my money
stretched far enough to get me a London Indian curry!
God may or may not give you an immediate answer to your
prayer. Yet, what you will receive - on the spot - is Godís peace
in your heart and mind. His word guarantees it. Itís time to grow
in the peace of God - through prayer.