Philippians 4:6-8 “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. 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.”
This is my favorite verse and one that I am actively working into my thought life. It is literally a road map to happiness and peace. This verse is a step by step on how to make your life better, the only catch is that you have to follow it.
What does this even mean?
‘Do not be anxious about anything but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your request to God.”
The biggest thing here, at least in my very unprofessional opinion, is the with thanksgiving part. So many times, when we pray, it’s just asking for things. Why can’t we show God our thankfulness? Even in the darkest hour, there is always something to be grateful for. Even if its being thankful that we have a loving God to listen to our woes.
‘And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.’
It is my belief that coming to Christ with a grateful heart, is the foundation to feeling the peace of God. Having a grateful heart means surrendering to the will of God and the fact that there are things out of your control. It shows that you can see the good things in your life and you are doing more than asking for stuff like a spoiled child. Being thankful when we come to Christ in prayer makes your time with God feel more genuine and completely changes the tone of your prayer.
‘Finally brothers, 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’
Sooo, what are you thinking about? Is what you’re thinking about the truth? Are your thoughts noble? Are you looking at the situation in the right mindset? Do you focus on what is pure? Do you think about lovely things? Do you focus on what makes you admirable? Would you consider what goes through your head excellent or praiseworthy? These thought patterns are the pillars of a healthy mind.
How do I change my thoughts to reflect these things?
Watch your thoughts. Next time you’re in a funk of depression, or anytime really, there is no bad time to start, pay attention to what kind of thoughts are floating around in your head. Pay attention to how you react and ask yourself if the situation warranted your reaction. Be nice to yourself, this is not about judgement, this is about learning so you can heal. Taking a step in the right direction and taking back control over your thoughts and your life.