We have a wonderful promise: "The peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Phil. 4:7 NIV)

Before taking this to heart, however, it is important to note the context of this promise. When we read verse 6, we find it is a conditional promise: "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and ptition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God..." (Phil 4:6 NIV). We find, therefore, that the promise of God's peace that surpasses understanding and guards our hearts and minds is conditional upon presenting every request to God with thanksgiving!

Years ago, when I was in High School in France, I was asked to compose a poem. So I had chosen to the topic of peace. I don't remember the entire poem, but I do remember writing that we would have enough food and that we would have peace and not war. This was, of course, rooted in the fact that I had lived in a communist country with war surrounding me, and throughout my entire life, I had faced persecution, famine and even death. How I longed for that peace!

I didn't understand peace back then. It was a fantasy that I longed for. Today, through the revelation of God's Holy Spirit, I have come to understand that we don't find peace in food or other material things, or even in people. We have peace in Christ. I understand now Jesus' statement: "It is written: 'Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'" (Matt. 4:4 NIV). This means that our peace comes from the Words from the mouth of God, and as a result of the Holy Spirit's revelations, I have begun to understand peace and what it entails.

Here are just a few of the Words that come from the mouth of God by which we are promised peace:

a. "Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives." (John 14:27 NIV). How often we try to resolve our own problems instead of turning to the living water that God freely gives to us.

b. "Until now you have asked nothing in my name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full." (JN 16.24 NIV). So we can ask him! And how blessed and privileged we are to be able to ask anything in the name of Jesus Christ. So often on this earth, those who give expect something in return. The problem is, without God, no one has power to do anything or help anyone. It's only through the will of our Heavenly Father, by the powerful name of Jesus Christ, that we can receive.

c. "And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work." (2 Corinthians 9:8 NIV). I remember as a child, continually moving from one refugee camp to another. When I would arrive at each camp, I would have only the clothes on my back. However, as I look back, His written word are true. God always provided all things at all times, and I always had everything I needed.

d. "Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen." (Hebrews 13:20 NIV). Right now this is my pray for myself and my family, and for each one of you reading this devotional.

e. "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened." (Matthew 7:7 -10 NIV) How often do we ask God to help us in our problems? This Bible text came to life for me when my son took a good towel to clean the water paints that he had spilled...If only he had asked me first! And if only I, myself, had asked God in each situation...

f. "No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God's seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God." (1 John 3:9 NIV). When we face the temptation to sin, God's Word helps us to rebuke that temptation in Jesus' name. Let's remember that when Jesus Christ faced the Satan in the wilderness, He used God word to rebuke temptation: "Jesus answered, 'it is written…'" (Luke 4:4,8 NIV)

There are many more. Check out Matt 11:28-30, 1 Peter 5:7-10, 1 Peter 1:1-2, John 16:33, etc. The important thing is this: Let's remember to present every request to God with thanksgiving. Let's remember that material things are not what brings us peace; but rather, we are nourished by the Word of God. And in those days when peace seems to be eluding us, let's remember these Truths from God's Holy Word!

Thank Jesus Christ! "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!" (Revelation 5:13 NIV)

Yours in Christ,
Sophie Chun Ngeth