Imagine your reaction if someone told you this…
A woman was sitting in her living room dealing with a terrible ordeal and all of a sudden, a peace that totally goes beyond anything she could understand or imagine or explain came sweeping over her body. In that instant, she suddenly felt happy. Joyful.
Would you think she was crazy?
That woman is me.
You might still think I’m crazy, and that’s okay, but hear me out.
When I was diagnosed with breast cancer and dealing with all the decisions that go with it, I put on a pretty brave face. But let me assure you, there were many many many times when I lost it.
I’d hold it together in front of my family until I could escape to the shower where I would sob under the steaming water so no one could hear me. Or I’d wait until everyone in my house was gone for the day and then crawl into my bed so I could feel safe in my own little cocoon.
I talked to God a lot during those times.
I never really had the right words, but somehow that was okay. God knew what I was feeling.
And more often than not, as I was talking with Him, my anxiety would be replaced by a strange sort of calm. A knowing– that whatever happened, I was not alone.
Some people might say, “Well, that’s because crying is therapeutic. Of course you’re going to feel calm after exhausting yourself with tears.”
I didn’t always cry.
Sometimes I would just be feeling especially anxious or panicky and start talking to God and the calm would come. Not every time, but many times. And if I started praying out loud, often my body would first be filled with chills, followed by the calm.
This isn’t magic or paranormal activity. This is a promise God makes us in the Bible. It’s part of the series of scripture we’ve been memorizing.
Last week God told us what we need to do: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” (Philippians 4:6)
And this week He tells us what He will do: “And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)
The promise is there for the taking. If you don’t believe me, memorize this verse and take it straight to God in prayer.
Maybe it looks like this:
God, you told me to come to you and share my heart. To tell you what I need and thank you for all you have done. I’m here doing that now. Regardless of what the answer is to my specific request, will you please cover me now with a peace that transcends all understanding?
God can do that for you, you know. And there’s no limit to the amount of times you can ask and the amount of times He will give.
Trust me. I’ve tested the limits and haven’t found them yet.