Don’t worry about anything. But in everything, with prayer and requests, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
Years ago, I saw an odd thing. A pickup truck in an alley slowly crossed a street and made its way past me. That was not, however, the “odd thing.” What was unusual was that the truck was being driven by a dog.
A man parked his truck in the alley and left the engine running while he ran a quick errand. Apparently, his dog got behind the wheel and managed to bump the shift lever into gear. When the man returned to his vehicle, he found it a hundred yards down the alley – angled into a hedge.
There is a good reason why we don’t issue driver’s licenses to dogs. They’re lousy drivers.
Throughout my life I have wanted to be in the driver’s seat. If God would only answer all my prayers the way I ask them, everything would be so great. But He doesn’t. And, that is why I sometimes get anxious.
But this passage makes an amazing statement: it doesn’t say we will be at peace once God answers our prayers the way we want. Instead, it makes the wild claim that we can find peace as soon as we “present our request to God.”
Do you understand why this is so? If you think you can only be at peace when God gives you whatever you ask for, then it means you want to be in control. The fact is, though, we can steer the universe about as good as a dog can drive a truck.
Once a friend took me flying with him in a small plane. As we crested a mountain range we hit fairly severe turbulence. I white-knuckled the arms of my seat as we bounced along and the wings flapped like they were going to snap off. Now, suppose my pilot friend told me to take over the controls. Would that lessen my fear? No way.
Trying to take control from the one who knows best what to do always increasesanxiety.
The Bible teaches us we can find peace before we get the request we want from God. Peace is found as soon as we pray. Why? Because, in prayer, we are taking all our worries and problems and making them God’s problem. We are trusting Him to know best how to guide and direct our lives.
Why don’t you take all your worries and bundle them up in a big bag? Make sure you have all of them in there. Then hand the bag over to the Lord. Tell Him what you need. He can take it from there.
And you can know a peace that is beyond understanding.
(copyright 2012 Marty Kaarre)