“Be careful for nothing,” Paul in Philippians 4:6 tells us. And he goes on to say, “but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be known unto God.”
Paul is telling the church at Philippi, don’ let worry override your faith in God just because of the cares of life. Don’t let your mind become troubled with things of this life that you can do nothing about. But, he says, you have much to thank God for and in your thanksgiving, recognize that He will supply your needs through supplication. Sure, God knows our needs, but we need to recognize Him as the provider and our praying and thanksgiving does that.
This song I learned as a teenager has given me so much assurance through the years.
“Tell the Lord, Tell the Lord, tell Him all of your troubles;
And soon they’ll all disappear.
Tell the Lord, Tell the Lord, I once told Him my troubles;
And these are the words I did hear:
‘My Child, this world is a place that you’re only passing through;
On the way, things will happen to you;
You’ll meet the good, you’ll meet the bad,
You’ll be happy, you’ll be sad;
But through all this you will shine,
For, my child, you’re one of mine.’”
Don’t forget this all-important fact. “Jesus loves me,” is not just a song for children to sing. This simple truth encourages, builds faith and brings us closer to Christ. And it brings us to the place of sharing that love. That’s what Philippians 4 was all about. He talks about the chuch’s care for him and their care for each other. Not only should we care about our brothers’ physical needs, but to unconditionally love in Christ, exhorting one another and rejoicing together.
Then come the rewards. In Philippians 4:19, we read the answer, “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.” How are the needs going to be supplied? By Christ Jesus according to his riches in glory — no limits.
Paul told the people in 1 Thessalonians they didn’t need him to tell them how to love — for they had proven their brotherly love for him for “ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another ... indeed ye do it toward all the brethren which are in all Macedonia:” (1 Thessalonians 4:9, 10). He also tells them not to act like sinners who defraud their brothers. And not only love the brethren, he says, but “walk honestly toward them that are without ...”
Next week, we’ll discuss love expanded.