Philippians 4:2-9 | Happiness & Peace
Debrief offers an abridged outline of the Sunday sermon for individuals or Community Groups alike, to re-engage the content of the Sunday sermon. This outline is far from complete, but serves to give a track or road map to walk through the content of Sunday in another context during the week.
The BIG IDEA: Happiest Christians are those who know the peace of God in every circumstance
Rejoice in the Lord Always (v:5)
There are no exceptions allowed or wriggle room
- Note: The word Joy is the root for a compound word for Grace – I look on that as God embedding Joy within His Grace given to us
- The Scriptures clearly tell us that the trials of life should have a transforming effect on our lives – James 1:2-3
- Paul focuses on one attribute of that transformation – reasonableness…Gentle spirit
Many times anxiety and worry are an immediate effect of the experience of adverse circumstances in life so Paul gives practical instruction regarding anxiety in the following verses:
Be Anxious For Nothing (v:6-7)
- Seek after God in Every Circumstance
- Prayer - worship, confession, intercession
- Supplication - petitions expressive of specific personal need
- With Thanksgiving - Affirm trust in the nature and person of God (names, revelation, experience)
- Will Receive the Peace of God
- Defies understanding by natural man
- Will guard (military term – patrolling a perimeter) your heart (feelings, emotions)
- Will guard your mind (will, your decisions…thinking processes)
Knowing The Peace of God Experientially (v:8-9)
- Set your Mind on Positive Biblical Solutions to Life’s Struggles
- Focus mind on whatever is True, Honorable, Pure, Lovely, of good Report, Worthy of Praise more than just Scripture but really anything we expose ourselves to.
- Practice (things that we usually already know)
- Learned - Biblical instruction
- Received - Spirit speakingHeard - Wise Counsel
- Seen - Testimony of others
- Be obedient to those things - practice them
- The God of Peace will be with you (again, in relationship)…in every circumstance
Diving In offers a few questions to help you re-engage the concepts from Sunday. Feel the freedom to use all of the questions, or to simply camp out on just one. These questions aren't intended to answer all the issues that surface through the thrust of this weeks' message, but to simply raise them and allow you time and space to process them, ideally in the context of your Community Group.
- When in your life has it been hardest for you to rejoice in the Lord? During what season in life? During what circumstances in life?
- What have been the circumstances in life that have caused you the most anxiety? How have you known the peace of God instead of anxiety in the midst of these circumstances?
- How have you seen the peace of God guard your heart and mind in the midst of challenging circumstances? What has this looked like?
- When was the last time you where able to set your mind on positive, biblical solutions to a particular difficult circumstance in life? What was the circumstance? What were the positive, biblical solutions you set your mind on and employed?
The Deep End is a short and simple formation exercise you can use to dive deep into your heart before God. Feel the freedom to divert from the directions if that makes it easier for you to connect with Jesus in this exercise.
- First, quiet your heart before the Lord. If you find yourself distracted by various thoughts (things on your “To Do” list, etc.), don’t “fight” the distractions, but rather spend some time praying over those things. Hopefully soon your heart will quieted down and you will be able to hear the Lord speaking to you.
- Next, spend some time thinking about a circumstance in your life today that is particularly challenging. What is that circumstance? Why is it so challenging?
- Next, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you the things that are "worthy of praise," even in the midst of the difficulty of this circumstance. Take some time to write those things down in your journal for prayer and future reference. Spend some time praying over these things, concentrating on things that are praiseworthy.
- End your time by thanking God for being a God of peace, who can even bring peace in the midst of the difficult circumstance(s) you face today.
My hope is that these simple exercises in The 60 will help what we discovered during this week be distilled, and deepened in your heart and life with Jesus.
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