Living Among the Thorns

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Brenda Emmons shares how we can exchange our anxieties and emotional dilemmas for God’s peace.

For my life is spent with sorrow, and my years with sighing; my strength fails ...and my bones waste away” Psalm 31:9-10.

This verse represents one of the deepest states of depression a person could experience… sorrowful lifesighing yearsfailed strength.   His feelings are taking him to the greatest degree of his emotions as if there could never be healing from his present circumstances. Can you imagine where David would have been if he sat in his emotions indefinitely?   Thankfully, by the end of his prayer he was praising God for future deliverance.  David had what many people lack…expectant hope

Many people try to implement the thoughts of Phil 4:6 when they are upset – Don’t worry about things…pray about everything…thank God and let Him know what is bothering us.  But it isn’t until we go further in the passage where we are given the blueprint of success in claiming victory over our emotions.  The challenge is to exchange our anxieties and emotional dilemmas for God’s peace.  We are to replace thoughts of sorrow…sighing…failure…life wasting away with thoughts of Phil 4:8.

  • ‘whatever is true’ – God is greater than our deepest sorrow
  • ‘whatever is honorable’ – we honor God when we trust Him for healing
  • ‘whatever is lovely’ – surrendering our ugly emotions to Him
  • ‘whatever is worthy of praise’ – if we are truly in Him these thoughts should consume us throughout every day

It is only when we change the way we think about our lives that we come in for the blessing of receiving God’s peace.  Short of that we are just quoting some nice words from the Bible.  My study states ‘When a child of God changes the way they think about their life, they are taking a huge, difficult step in spiritual maturity.  It’s tough to do.  Some have been saying the same anxious, sad things for years because it’s been too difficult for them to change their thought patterns.  Or maybe they never really tried.  Jesus had some strong words about why this kind of person won’t live in peace.  Their heart is full of thorns’ (Stronger, p. 54).

As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful’ Matthew 13:22.

Let us all live out the second part of a Phil 4:4-9 life.

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