Practicing Peace {in a crazy world}

It’s been a tough week for this old planet.

We’ve received quite a bit of shocking and heartbreaking news over these past few days.

Suddenly, the world has become a very small place and frightening events appear to be at our doorstep. Pat and I live equal distance from Baltimore and Washington D.C., and I can tell you – people are on edge.

In times like these, it is easy to let worry and fear take over – especially when we feel utterly helpless and uncertain of what is going to happen next.

Our anxiety may produce a feeling of powerlessness but, the truth is, we are not powerless at all. Anxiety is such a liar.

A very familiar passage from Philippians 4:6-9 tells us exactly what to do with our anxiousness:

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, 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.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.”

So often, we stop right there at verse 8, but the next two sentences in verse 9  give us an action step that will ensure we receive God’s peace:

“Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”

This isn’t something we don’t already know, but the truth is, so many of us don’t do it — at least not consistently.

Girls, many of you have spent years in Bible study. Like me, you have shared countless hours sitting around circles with women discussing God’s Word. We have all attended women’s conferences and sat under the teaching of powerful Christian speakers and teachers – but, with all due respect, it is not enough. We need to put it into practice.

We cannot just think about such things – we must do them. That is the step Paul is urging us to take.

When anxiety hits, it’s easy for me to forget this. You too?

I heard someone say recently that the enemy is not at all concerned when we read our Bibles — he is only concerned when we do what it says!

So here is the question…

 In these uncertain and worrisome times, are we going to live in a state of fretfulness, anxiety and panic – or will we walk in the truth we have been taught?

How can we be the light of the world during such darkness if we are unable to reflect God’s peace?

The threats and violence going on around us are real – but our Lord is not only real, He is in complete control. He may be asking us to walk a difficult road, but He lays out the steps we can take to walk it in peace.

We are to pray with thanksgiving in every situation and to keep our mind on all that is excellent and praiseworthy.

And then His perfect peace — such sweet relief — will come.

Notice that He tells us to express thankfulness in every situation – not just when things are going smoothly and all is well. Consistency is the key.

My friend Laurene is a wonderful example. She sees the ‘praise’ in every situation and I love her dearly. Last night at Bible study, she suggested that we not only pray over weekly prayer requests, but also pray in thankfulness over each other’s praises. What a perspective changer!

I would like to borrow Laurene’s idea and do the same with all of you. Let’s put this into practice together.

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Will you please leave a quick comment below, sharing something you are thankful for? To use the words from Philippians 4 — something true, noble, right, pure, lovely, or admirable and anything that is excellent or praiseworthy.

I’d love to read your praises!

Then, we can join together in prayer, thanking God for what He has done in our lives. I promise to pray for each one of you. I’ll go first and leave a comment with my own praise.

Let’s remind the evil one, and all of his helpers here on earth, that in spite of their attempts to terrorize us, we remain faithful and thankful. 

I am grateful to be on the journey with you,

 laura

 PS. Just for fun and because I am so thankful for you, I’ve posted two FREE yummy Thanksgiving cookie recipes for you to download and enjoy! They are our family’s favorites and the printable recipes are pretty enough to frame! Simply click the ‘freebies’ tab above. I’ll have more free downloads posted once ADVENT begins, so stay tuned! I am truly thankful for your support and encouragement! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! xo

 

42 Comments

  1. LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 11:28 am

    I am thankful for the way the Lord has carried me through this difficult year. SO thankful His promises are true.

  2. Cheryl on November 19, 2015 at 11:37 am

    I am thankful that last Thursday that when a deer jumped out beside me that I was not hurt just shaken up and my car was able to drive home. Yes I was hit by the deer but I was ok. Praise God

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:21 pm

      Praising God for His protection, Cheryl! Thank you for posting. xo

  3. Wanda on November 19, 2015 at 11:55 am

    HAPPY THANKSGIVING!! I am grateful to Laura Acuna for her bravery in being so authentic to allow all women to share the good, the bad, and the ugly to launch us into new thinking! I’m in awe that we have an instruction book, The Bible, that we can guide us in every situation. I’m thankful for my marriage & family. Thanks Laura for posting yet another challenge! You are Love! Xoxo

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:24 pm

      Wanda –you are the sweetest thing. Thank you! Praising God with you in thanksgiving for His Word.xo

  4. Cyndi on November 19, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    I praise God for 60 degree temperatures in November, for the crunch of leaves under foot, that I can talk to Him in the dead of night, for a refrigerator and pantry full of food and for resources to share with those not as fortunate:)
    Yay, God! What a great exercise in praise, Laura! xoxo

  5. Kathy on November 19, 2015 at 12:34 pm

    I praise God for another day. Another chance. For physical health, a warm home and the opportunity to snuggle with my daughter.

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:25 pm

      Joining you in prayer in Thanksgiving for good health, our children and life itself. Thanks for posting, Kathy. xo

  6. Donna on November 19, 2015 at 12:50 pm

    I am thankful for wonderful family and friends.

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:27 pm

      Thanks for posting AND sharing, Donna. I am praying with you in thanks for wonderful family and friends. I’m also looking forward to meeting you at Christmas. xo

  7. Lori on November 19, 2015 at 1:14 pm

    I am thankful for dear friends that introduce me to encouraging posts like this one. I am also thankful for the blessing of helping to raise my grandson while my daughter and her hubby are working, and that my hubby is here in the afternoons to share this blessed joy! God is so good in times of light and darkness, all the time!

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:28 pm

      Thanks for posting, Lori! I am praying with you in thanksgiving for the gift of family. How blessed your grandson is to have you in his life. xo

  8. Debbie on November 19, 2015 at 1:28 pm

    I’m thankful for this message this morning. It has been a very hectic morning with an unscheduled stop on the way to work to care for aging parents. Thank you for the reminder to “act” and not just “react” to the stress.

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:31 pm

      Debbie — I am so glad this messaged blessed you this morning. I hope your parents are ok. They are blessed to have you caring for them. Thank you for posting. Praying for you.xo

  9. Sharon Weldon on November 19, 2015 at 1:49 pm

    Praising God for the continued healing of my husband through medical means and the healing Power of Jesus!

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:34 pm

      Praising God with you Sharon!! Thank you for posting your praise! xo

  10. Coleen on November 19, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    I am thankful for my family and friends. I am thankful for my marriage. I am thankful for God’s gift of the Holy Spirit that lives in me and all who believe in His name!

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:35 pm

      Coleen — thank you for posting your praises –I am praising with you for all you have shared! xo

  11. Jeanne on November 19, 2015 at 2:30 pm

    I am thankful for my husband, my wonderful kids, my dad (who is enjoying restored health!), my mom, and all my friends (the Christian AND the unbelievers who I can witness to!). I’m thankful for job security for my husband and me and for freedom to practice my faith in a world where that is not always a reality. God IS good!

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:36 pm

      God IS good! I am praying for all you have written. Thanks for posting this morning. xo

  12. Brenda on November 19, 2015 at 3:58 pm

    I am Thankful that God believed in Me even when I didn’t believe in myself & when in 1989 I asked Him to take the wheel He didn’t hesitate! I wasn’t a christian, I didn’t have a clue what I was saying (I was in melt down), I DID NOT deserve a thing from Him BUT He saw it different. HE MET ME RIGHT WHERE I WAS! 🙂 Thank You Merciful God of the Universe & ALL that is in it. Amen

    • LauraAdmin on November 19, 2015 at 8:38 pm

      Brenda– you have walked with him for 26 years. He has shown you many, many reasons to give Him praise over all this time. Praising Him with you. Thank you for posting. xo

  13. Sena Roop on November 20, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    I am thankful for a wonderful job, a loving husband and God loving children and grandchildren.

    • LauraAdmin on November 20, 2015 at 8:23 pm

      Sena — Thank you for posting. You are BLESSED and I am praying with you over all of the blessings in your life. Happy Thanksgiving. xo

  14. Diane Przybylek on November 20, 2015 at 2:57 pm

    I am grateful that my husband is still here, despite having been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer 18 months ago, that his chemo has been effective and that he is able to enjoy quality of life with family and friends while he grows in faith through church and the Waterboyz. We have been blessed with the love, support and prayers of so many wonderful people – true evidence of the presence of the Holy Spirit in the Body of Christ. I am also grateful for Laura, Donna, Carolyn and Margie!

    • LauraAdmin on November 20, 2015 at 8:21 pm

      Diane — you are a woman who has SO MUCH joy in the Lord because you remain thankful and faithful. Your joy is contagious. Love you dearly –and your sweet husband. xo

  15. Lori on November 21, 2015 at 2:12 am

    I’m thankful for my salvation because without it everything else wouldn’t matter. Thank you for linking up with Thankful Thursdays.

    • LauraAdmin on November 25, 2015 at 4:53 pm

      Lori– so true. I am praising the Lord with you that you are His! Thank you for commenting. Happy Thanksgiving. xo

  16. Evangeline on November 21, 2015 at 3:04 pm

    In class one evening last week a classmate said to me…I am in a very dark place at this time in my life but look at me I am still smiling…I too am walking in a dark place at this time in my life so this brought hope to my heart. Just wanted to share. God Bless.

    • LauraAdmin on November 25, 2015 at 4:52 pm

      Evangeline — I am so glad you let us know you are going through a dark time. I will pray for you and I hope others who read this will pray as well. I have had a rough year too. If you are grieving, I have a few posts from earlier this year that I hope you will read. They are very hopeful in the midst of a very dark time. We can have joy even when it hurts–the joy comes from knowing He loves us, is “for us” and holds us in the palm of His hand. He sees you and is concerned with everything that concerns you. xo

  17. Cindy on November 21, 2015 at 3:41 pm

    I am thankful for my family and friends. I am thankful God redirects me to find and see the GOOD in the world!

    • LauraAdmin on November 25, 2015 at 4:48 pm

      Cindy– yes! I am thankful for the “redirection too”. Praying with you and thanking Him for all of your blessings. xo

  18. Carolyn on November 21, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    I am so thankful for my husband, children, grandchildren, my church family, and most of all, God’s faithfulness in every area of my life!

    • LauraAdmin on November 25, 2015 at 4:47 pm

      Carolyn — Thank you for leaving a praise! Praying with you in thanksgiving for all He has given! xo

  19. Marva @ sunSPARKLEshine on November 22, 2015 at 1:38 am

    I am thankful that the blessing of family. Together we’ve been through some challenging times this year but it helps knowing that we have each other. Thanks for you too, Laura and this reminder to give thanks. Glad I found you on #joyHopeLive.

    • LauraAdmin on November 25, 2015 at 4:45 pm

      Marva- I appreciate your sweet words and thank you so much for sharing this on twitter. Praising God with you this Thanksgiving. xo

  20. Janet from FL on November 25, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    I am thankful to God for so many things! I keep a journal on the kitchen table, called “God’s Blessings”. I write down something I am thankful for on each day. Sometimes several things in 1 day. Right now, I am most thankful for the birth of our twin granddaughters on Nov 10. They are healthy and beautiful! They were conceived through IVF. Our daughter-in-law is 43, and these are her 1st babies. Effie is the oldest by 3 minutes, named after her great-grandmother on our side of the family. The younger girl is Zoe Lynne, named after her grandmother on the mother’s side. They are a miracle! I prayed a long time for God to bless them with a child, and He gave us 2!

    • LauraAdmin on November 26, 2015 at 3:49 am

      Janet — Thank you for sharing your beautiful story! You certainly have had a miracle — and that is an understatement! Enjoy every minute with those grandbabies. Happy, happy Thanksgiving! I am so glad you stopped by. Many Blessings! xo

  21. Minnie on November 30, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    it’s time to let the word of God become alive in our lives!

  22. Mary Gilbert on December 1, 2015 at 7:36 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing with us at #JoyHopeLive!

  23. Dawn Nelson on July 17, 2016 at 7:30 pm

    I’m thankful for God taking me through a dark time and revealing to me that I need to keep in his presence! That being involved and doing so much in church does not make him happy as I’m too busy to know he is around. So I walked away from it all and just spend time with him daily!

    • LauraAdmin on July 18, 2016 at 8:23 am

      Oh Dawn — I have learned that lesson myself! xoxo

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