“The peace that surpasses everything… – Church of the Resurrection

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Anxiety is now the most common mental illness in the United States, affecting more than 40 million people. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America estimates that only 36.9% receive treatment and the consequences are immeasurable. Anxiety has become a silent bane and for many it is the gateway to unhealthy addictions and harmful behaviors. *

I have times of anxiety but nothing to do with certain people I know and love. It is amazing to think of Paul writing to the Philippians from a prison cell and urging them to don’t worry about anything. In verse 4 he tells us to Rejoice in the Lord always. I repeat: rejoice!

I admit that sounds like overkill. I’m not sure I would have any joy if I was in jail and maybe going to be executed. How do we find joy in the midst of all the stress and demands that we may experience?

My wife and I recently celebrated our 27e birthday! When we got married, we were part of Youth With A Mission, garnering our financial support and leading short-term mission teams. In the first year, we had very little money, were pregnant, and had lost a grandmother whom we loved dearly. It was an intense time and we both felt anxious and stressed.

One day a mutual friend came by and took us to dinner and see a movie. I remember we laughed until we cried! It was a special moment that kind of eased the pain of what we were going through. Now, I’m not saying that dinner and a movie can completely solve our anxiety. But I think friendship, laughing, sharing, and helping to carry each other’s burdens can help.

In John 14:27, Jesus proclaims: Peace I leave you; my peace I give you. I do not give you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

I like that in some religious traditions sharing the peace of the Lord is part of every worship service. We tell each other a blessing and the truth. So today, I hope you know that Jesus and his peace are with you. The peace of the Lord be with you.

* Therapy, medication, and counseling can be life changing and important. For more information, visit www.cor.org/care.


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