Paul’s 2nd Condition (for peace): Pray About Everything!

May 9, 2017

“…tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer…” (Philippians 4:6)

It’s easy to say, “Don’t worry,” but what are we going to do about our problems if we don’t worry about them? Paul doesn’t leave us in a vacuum when he prescribed: “Pray about everything!”

The Word of God exhorts us to pray when we are in crisis situations. Psalm 46:1 has an alternate reading in the New Standard version, “God is our refuge and strength, abundantly available for help in tight places.” God delivered Paul from many tight places. We should therefore always pray in a crisis: “When it’s hardest to pray, pray the hardest!”

However, from personal experience Paul knew that God doesn’t always take our problems away. He had a physical condition that he described as a “thorn in the flesh.” Three times he asked God to take it away. Paul saw many people miraculously healed as he ministered the healing power of the Holy Spirit to them. Yet, when he asked God to solve his own health problem, three times God said, “No. No. No.”

But God also responded, “My grace is sufficient for you and that is all you need. My strength looks good on weak people.” (2 Corinthians 12 LB) His weakness drove Paul to discover the strength of God. When he did, he not only accepted his condition but eventually thanked God in it so the power of God might be showcased in him.

As Paul accepted the will of God regarding his thorn, he learned that the will of God will never lead us where the grace of God cannot keep us. Paul exhorts us from his personal experience that prayer may deliver us from our problems, or prayer may give us the grace to cope with them. But, in any case, pray.

Always pray about everything!

 Dick Woodward, from A Prescription for Peace


Pray, Pray, Pray!!!

March 17, 2015

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”  Philippians 4:6

It is easy to say, “Don’t worry,” but what are we going to do about our problems if we don’t worry about them?  Paul does not leave us in a vacuum here… he goes on to prescribe:“Pray about everything!”

God’s Word exhorts us to pray when we are in crisis situations. Psalm 46:1 states: “God is our refuge and strength.  A very present help in trouble.” If you check alternate readings, the first verse reads that God is “abundantly available for help in tight places.”  As a result of our prayers, God can deliver us from tight places.

Paul was delivered from many, many tight places. For example, he asked the Philippians to pray that he might be delivered from prison.  They prayed, and he was delivered from his imprisonment at that time.  We should therefore always pray in a crisis.  Someone said, “When it is hardest to pray, pray the hardest!”

Paul knew from personal experience, however, that God does not always take our problems away.  He had a physical “thorn in the flesh” condition that he asked God three times to take away.  Paul saw many people healed as he ministered the power of the Holy Spirit to them.  Yet, when he asked God to solve his health problem, three times God said, “No. No. No.” God essentially said, “Tell you what I’m going to do, Paul. I’m going to give you the grace to cope with your problem.”  (IICorinthians 12.)

When God gave Paul the grace to cope with his problem, he discovered that the power of Christ was upon him in a mighty way… So Paul not only accepted the will of God regarding his thorn, he gloried in the whole experience of learning that the will of God will never lead us where the grace of God cannot keep us. Paul explains that his weakness became a showcase in which the strength of God was exhibited.

Paul learned from personal experience that, while worry is not productive, prayer is always very productive.  Prayer may deliver us from our problems, or it may give us the grace to cope with them.  But, in any case, pray.  Always pray about everything.

Tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer.”  (J.B. Phillips.)  Always pray about everything!

Dick Woodward, A Prescription for Peace


Worrier or Warrior?

November 29, 2011

“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. Then you will experience God’s peace which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you rest in Christ Jesus.”   (Philippians 4: 6, 7 NLT)

In these two verses the Apostle Paul is challenging us with two options: when we are facing challenging problems we can worry about them, or we can turn our challenging problems into prayer requests.  The reason Paul writes that we are not to worry is because worry is counterproductive.  He therefore prescribes that if we are overwhelmed with problems, we should let our mountain of problems turn us into prayer warriors.

So here we have two options.  We can be worriers, or we can be warriors. Prayer changes things!  Worry, on the other hand does not change anything except for the severe negative consequences it can have on our body, soul and spirit.  When we consider the devastating effects of worry and the miraculous results of answered prayer, that no brainer should resolve our two options into one.

When we realize we are anxious or uptight and we know it is because we are choosing to be a worrier, we should ask God to convert us into a prayer warrior.  We should hold our problems up before the Lord and trade our futile worries for powerful prayers.  He may deliver us from those problems or give us the grace to cope with them.  But, in either case, He will give us peace.

Paul writes that God will stand guard like a soldier over our hearts and minds and give us supernatural peace as they rest in what Christ will do.