14 Mar Do not Be Anxious, Pray
Last Sunday, Pastor Jeremy Chasteen preached the sermon “God Leads Us to Fulfill His Mission” from 2 Corinthians 2:12-17. We considered anew the glorious truth that God has reconciled us to himself and now sovereignly leads us out into the world to accomplish his mission of salvation, spreading the knowledge of him everywhere.
Read: Philippians 4:4-7
This Sunday, while circumstances prevent us from gathering corporately, we will still have the blessing of worshipping the Lord through song and the teaching of the Word via video tomorrow morning at 11 am. The video will be available on our website here:
Also, the video will be accessible on the Crosspoint App.
In light of the current developments surrounding COVID-19, Pastor Ken will encourage us with a message from Philippians 4:4-7. As you prepare your heart to worship the Lord and receive the Word tomorrow morning, let these words from John Piper assist you.
Reflect: “Do not Be Anxious, Pray”
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7)
The effect of faithful prayer here is stated first negatively, then positively. Negatively: “Don’t be anxious about anything.” Positively: “The peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Paul promises that a life of faithful, Christ-dependent, Christ-exalting prayer will be a life protected from anxiety (and its many sinful fruits) by God’s peace.
If you want victory over worry and you want to have the steady enjoyment of God’s peace, then here is Paul’s prescription: “In everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” Don’t miss the words “in everything.” In everything . . . let your requests be made known to God.” Pray about everything. Stay in a mindset of prayer all day. Don’t just pray in crises. Pray about everything—that whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do you would glorify God (1 Corinthians 10:31 ). The most crucial prayer for every situation and action is: “Hallowed by Thy name (Matthew 6:9).
How shall we do this? Paul uses three words. In everything “by prayer”—that’s the broad word of spiritual devotion, including different kinds of prayer. And “supplication”—that’s the narrow word that focuses on the kind of prayer, namely, asking for help. “With thanksgiving”—that’s the humble, non-demanding mindset that flavors all of prayer. Making requests thankfully means that we will be content and thankful with whatever God wisely and lovingly gives us. And we know that he will hear our prayer and wisely and lovingly give us what’s best for us.
When we let our requests be made known to God like this—in the devotion of prayer, in many specific requests for help, with a heart that is thankful for everything God designs for us, the pleasures and the pain—then his peace will guard our minds and free us from anxiety in a way that defies mere rational explanation; it surpasses all understanding.
Oh, that the Lord might make you feel the joy and the wonder and the power and privilege and the peace of a life of prayer!
Excerpt from the sermon “Let Your Requests Be Made Known to God,” by John Piper, December 28, 2003.
Sing: Song List for Sunday
1. “How Great Thou Art,” Arr. Paul Baloche
2. “God Is Able,” by Hillsong Worship
3. “Yet Not I but Through Christ in Me,” by CityAlight