Tag Archive: struggles


Praying for Peace And It Does Not Come

  • I’ve been a committed Christian for over 40 years.
  • I’ve served in vocational ministry for over 30 years.
  • I’ve earned a master of divinity and a doctor of ministry.
  • I’ve preached over 1,000 sermons.
  • I’ve memorized hundreds of Scriptures.
  • I practice spiritual disciplines such as prayer, solitude, and fasting on a regular basis.

You’d think that with that spiritual pedigree, I should always experience God’s peace or at least when I lack it, should immediately regain it through prayer, quoting scripture, etc.

Not so in my experience.

One of my all time favorite scriptures is Philippians 4:6-7:

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

That verse, as do many others, implies that when we feel anxious and lack peace, if we turn to the Lord, cast our anxiety on him, pray, and yield our wills to His, then emotional peace should readily follow.

When I’ve done these things, sometimes I have regained His peace. At other times I haven’t. Not only have these experiences perplexed me, but when I faced difficult times with our oldest daughter’s rebellion and chronic illness with our youngest daughter, no matter how hard I prayed and quoted scripture, peace would sometimes elude me.

When peace didn’t come, an accusing voice inside me would add to my misery by suggesting that something must be wrong with me.

Maybe I didn’t have enough faith (so I would try to muster more of it).

Perhaps unconfessed sin was in the way (so I’d confess any unknown sins that I may have somehow missed).

Possibly I didn’t pray correctly (so I’d reframe my prayers).

Mostly these techniques failed. So I soldiered on, figuring something was still wrong with me.

My neatly packed theology hit a brick wall. It was like when Neo in the movie The Matrix said, “Something was just not right, something was missing, something was lacking, something bothering me like a splinter in your mind.”

My spiritual coping strategies fell short. I don’t mean to imply that we reduce Christianity to pragmatism. We love and obey God simply because He is God and is worthy of our worship and allegiance. Even so, I finally allowed my honest questions to bubble to the surface.

Why, if I did the right things, did peace not come?

Then… I began to understand how our brain works.

I began reading about the brain and enrolled in a master’s program in neuroleadership (a process that applies neuroscience insights to leadership principles). I began to understand that our brain is not simply like a computer, but also like a pharmacy. It’s constantly releasing chemicals into our blood that profoundly affects emotions like peace, anger, fear, and anxiety.

I’m learning that I can be right with God in all respects, and yet not feel emotional peace in the current circumstance. What a relief to learn that lack of peace does not necessarily mean I’m messed up.

As a result of these new insights, I have begun to see how we can use this incredible gift from God, our brain, for healthy living and productive leadership.

Have you ever struggled with this issue? How are you dealing with it?

This week’s article is written by Charles Stone (www.charlesstone.com), author of the book, People Pleasing Pastors. Submitted by Russ Olmon, President of Ministry Advantage, and Deb Mertin, certified Ministry Advantage coach. For more on this and other helpful subjects, go to www.ministryadvantage.org.

Christianity Is A Hard Task

Q: I am a young man battling with my Christian faith. Growing up, I was the only one in my household who had a difficulty converting to Christianity as I did not want to conform to the morals and standards of the Christian journey because I found that life boring. However, I began attending church regularly in my late teens. I found myself getting closer to God, especially through my exciting Sunday school classes. The classes were engaging and fruitful. The teacher was the main reason the class was so real to me and uplifting. He portrayed Christ-like qualities, and knew how to express and share the joy he found in the Lord. He went the extra mile to guide me and helped with my decision to be baptized. I was now on the right path, ready to fulfill God’s purpose for me. I believe God placed him in my life. He was an excellent example to how to follow Christ.

I moved to a different parish because of my job, and while there, I found it difficult to find a church. I kept in touch with my old Sunday school teacher, especially when my Christian journey got rough. It is a rough journey. I am trying hard to keep the faith, but that changed one night.

While on vacation, I went out with my non-Christian friends. I had a few drinks too many, and we ended up at a strip club. I felt guilty the entire time I was there and wanted to leave. But when I decided that this place was not for me, I noticed a familiar face in a corner of the strip club. To my amazement, it was my old Sunday school teacher! I immediately walked over to him where I pushed away one of the women. I didn’t have the strength to utter any words. He quickly grabbed my hand and took me outside, trying to formulate some kind of explanation, but failed. He was the one person I could count on to make sure I was doing what was right in the Lord. Now, I am lost and confused and I do not know who I can trust or believe in. How do I find my way back to Christ?

A: The arm of flesh will fail you, so you dare not trust your own. Your Sunday school teacher is not perfect, just like you. He struggles with temptations similar to your struggles. In fact, it is part of human nature to struggle with temptation for the rest of one’s life. Failure to meet the standards of God does not mean one is not a Christian. It means one has fallen short of the Glory of God. Sometimes, we even rebel against God’s will. God is always willing to forgive our failures and sins. God wants erring human beings to be sorry for their wrong actions and pledge to do better.

PUT CONFIDENCE IN GOD

Your confidence should not be in any preacher or Sunday school, but in God. You will need the support of others in the Christian journey. You need to engage in spiritual exercises of meditation, reading of the Bible, prayer and alms-giving. This will make you stronger to continue the Christian walk.

Don’t condemn your Sunday school teacher because you saw him at the strip club. It is better to try to understand him and encourage him to walk the straight and narrow path.

All the best on your spiritual journey.

Courtesy of the Editor (Jamaica Gleaner)

Have you been struggling and seeking the answer you need to find peace and deliverance from whatever situation you are facing in your life today?

struggles

Has the devil been feeding you with negative and defeating thoughts to make you believe that you will never overcome your struggles?

The answer to your struggles is just a distance between your knees and the floor. Prayer is a powerful resource that you can utilize to find the peace and comfort you need to get you through whatever situation you are struggling with.

You might be depressed, confused, exhausted and hopeless, but Jesus encourages you in the Scripture, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” Matthew 11:28-30.

Benedición

God's blessings through his word

Beholding Him Ministries

Grace, hope and Truth for each day.

The Isaiah 53:5 Project

Life: the time God gives you to determine how you spend eternity

Francine In Retirement

Seeing Life Through Photography

somebodylovesmeblog

Sharing God's love with the world, one heart at a time.

Karina's Thought

Encouraging and inspiring through God's word

deeclarknz.wordpress.com/

Woman to Woman and Heart to Heart...helping each other on our journey

Living For Jesus Christ Alone

Get accessed to sound biblical teachings regarding how to fruitfully live the Christian life that God intended you to live.

S.P.I.R.I.T Ministries

Inspired by: GOD

Christine's Poetry Blog

SHARING GOD'S LOVE THROUGH UPLIFTING POEMS OF FAITH BY CHRISTINE V MITCHELL

The Minstrel's Wife

A worship leader's missus and her views from the pew

Becoming the Oil and the Wine

Becoming the oil and wine in today's society

"Fresh Oil"

Fresh Oil is a secret place that is continuously being filled by the spirit of God. Fresh Oil will stay purpose driven to deliver compelling writings related to social injustice and spiritually rich revelations.

Distance Is Not A Barrier: Emmanuel TV Testimonies

A blog dedicated to sharing faith-building testimonies from the ministry of T.B. Joshua

The TB Joshua Blog

The Best Is Always Yet To Come...

66 Assurance Way

Spiritual Encouragement & Empowerment

Jesus Is My Joy Ministries/Devotions

My site has inspiration for you and TRUTH.

Empowerment Moments Blog

Empowering Minds To Believe!

Cross of Christ

By whom the world is crucified to me, and I to the world

Phoenix - The Rebirth of My Life

Raise mental illness awareness. Stop the stigma. Save a life.

Precious Jewels

Every individual is precious to God. Each soul is priceless.

advocatemmmohan aksharaalu

A great WordPress.com site

Equipping The Saints

"equipping the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ," (Ephesians 4:12)

Good Time Stories

Inspiring and Heartwarming Stories

humanangle

A fine WordPress.com site

The Bottom of a Bottle

Trust me, I've been there, I've looked, I've searched and I know now, that there are no answers to be found in the bottom of a bottle or on the edge of a blade! Fighting Hard, Recovering, Rebuilding, REBORN. Moving on from addiction to a new life.

Jubilee Journey

On the Road to Freedom, Reconciliation & Restoration in Jesus

Kev's Great Indie Authors

Supporting Indie Authors Worldwide

Mustard Seed Budget

FINANCES FOR YOUR MINISTRY

Redbird's Roost

The Future Is As Bright As The Promises Of God

Silence Teaches Us Who We Are

Silence, Centering Prayer, Contemplative Prayer, Jesus, God, and Life.

Living to Live Again

Exploring true identity in Christ

Laughing in Jamaica

the evolution of rodni

Life as an Alexander

Wife. Graduate Student. Jesus Follower.

hallelujahart

Biblical Calligraphy and Christian Art

GRAVITY OF GRACE

UNEARTHING THE VAST RICHES OF THE FINISHED WORK OF CHRIST

Annettejaco's Blog

Inspiring Articles

youngspark2

A topnotch WordPress.com site

a collection of writings

The greatest WordPress.com site in all the land!

Betty's Verse Of The DAY

Into His Arms I Fall

Prayer A to Z

Prayer A to Z excerpts, Bible studies on prayer

.....and a sprinkle of love

If only I had something witty to say.....

Rebecca Duvall

Author ~ Speaker ~ Blogger ~ Child of God

Petal Barclay-Smith Ministries

DELIVERANCE AND HEALING

VINE AND BRANCH WORLD MINISTRIES.COM

Taking the World one soul at a time

Men of One Accord

Just another WordPress.com site

%d bloggers like this: