"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."
I have read this verse many times since I was a kid. It's always been one of my favorites. Maybe because I worry too much. Maybe because I long for that deep in your soul, nothing can shake you kind of peace. Maybe it just sounded too good to be true. But it isn't! And today I witnessed this verse come to life.
I work part time, decorating at a retirement village. I am blessed to get to know the residents and enjoy them so much. They have such a wisdom that only comes from life experiences. My favorite is Gene. From the minute you meet Gene you know he loves the Lord. Not because he walks around carrying a Bible or quoting "all things work for good" when you're having troubles. But because he is ALWAYS ready with a word of encouragement and praise on his lips, whether for you or his God. He asks people if he can pray with and for them and I know he really does it! When he sees you, you feel like he's been waiting just to see you all day. I think that may have been a little how Jesus was when he was here. My life is better because I know Gene.
Today he was telling me of a recent tragedy in his family. His great-granddaughter delivered a 1 lb. baby girl over the Christmas holiday. She lived for a short 25 minutes. Anyone can imagine the pain going on for the whole family right now.
Gene cried as he told me the story, understandably overcome with grief. He explained how the funeral home owners called the young, financially struggling couple and let them know that all expenses, minus the tombstone, were taken care of! This relieved just one small burden for these young parents. But Gene said the most amazing thing, "No one can tell me that God doesn't take care of his children, sweetheart. You always remember that." In the face of such tragedy and heartache he was praising the name of the Lord! I was so awestruck by his certainty in the love of God despite the circumstances and the peace that flowed from that.
That is what we long for in this life people! That is what God offers us when we let go of control and really trust him with our lives. THAT is the peace that passes all understanding!