Verse of the Day Devotion: Philippians 4:6
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” – Philippians 4:6
Paul, in writing to the church at Philippi is encouraging them not be worried about things of this life. He is not saying for us not to take care of any matters we need to address. We do need to take care of our property and provide for our families. As Paul wrote to Timothy, “But if anyone does not provide for his own, and especially for those of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.” 1 Timothy 5:8. We are to take care of what God has given to us. However, as the theologian Albert Barnes put it, “but that there is to be such confidence in God as to free the mind from anxiety.” Jesus Himself put it this way. “Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:32-33.
Paul goes on to say, “but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” Philippians 4:6b. We are to trust God in everything; our needs and wants, everything regarding afflictions, embarrassment, trials, hurts and persecutions. There is nothing we cannot go to our God with, whether it be regarding our bodies or minds, our hopes, dreams, conflicts, or fears. And also, for anyone; ourselves, friends, families, strangers or even enemies.
The Lord wants us to come to Him in everything. We are to come to Him in both prayer and supplication. The word ‘supplication’ is a stronger word than prayer. It is the type of prayer which especially comes about from need or want in our lives. And there is an especially important inclusion in this verse regarding prayer, with thanksgiving. Whenever we lift up our requests to God, no matter what for, we need to be thankful. Whether it be for needs, wants, or afflictions. A good example of this is Paul and Silas in the Philippian jail. “The crowd rose up together against them, and the chief magistrates tore their robes off them and proceeded to order them to be beaten with rods. When they had struck them with many blows, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to guard them securely; and he, having received such a command, threw them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks. But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them;” Acts 16:22-25. They were beaten with rods, their feet placed in stocks and thrown into jail. However, they were not anxious or complaining, they were praising God in the midst of their suffering. And what happened? God set them free.
And what is the result of following our focus verse? “And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7. God will give us peace which surpasses our understanding. And this peace will guard our hearts and minds in Christ. We must trust that God will be with us in all things, and that all He does and allows will work toward our good. In other words, we must be content in all things. “Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am. I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how-to live-in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need. I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.” God will supply all our needs, no matter what those needs are. Contentment comes when we believe this and trust He will make it happen. He promised us this, and He will bring it to pass.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.