For the last few weeks we have been reflecting on anxiety and worry through the lens of Philippians 4:6,7: “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Paul urges us to replace worry with prayer, remembering to thank God for all He has done in our lives. God’s Holy Word then goes on to say, “Then you will experience peace, which exceeds anything we can understand.” How does this happen? I really don’t know sister, but it somehow happens through God’s grace and the power the Holy Spirit.
God in His mercy is allowing me and many others to witness this power of God’s Word in action, in and through our church family. Last week, Alfie Kelly was safely born to parents Paul and Victoria Kelly and grandparents Ian and Anne Holmes. A few days later, he was rushed to the hospital because he had stopped breathing, turning blue. Alfie is critically ill and in neonatal intensive care, where he is surrounded by skilled and experienced physicians and nurses. They are doing everything they can to get to the source of his health issues so they can take steps toward recovery. No doubt, it has been an anxious time for Paul and Victoria with 1 week old Alfie going through many tests and tubes and wires attached all over his body. Waiting. Watching. Wondering.
When our church community heard the news, they immediately spread the word to PRAY. Within a short time, there were many praying, as well as friends and family from all over the world. In fact, many from our church family have been meeting for prayer every night to stand shoulder to shoulder for Alfie and his parents. We have been praying in the pattern of Philippians 4:6,7. And God the Holy Spirit is giving Paul and Victoria peace! He is giving us, the church family, His peace as well.
Victoria shares: “Thank you so much for all the persistent and faithful prayers for our boy. We know that Jesus has been upholding him at all times and also pouring out his peace on Paul and I. So many bible verses have been ministering to us, but Psalm 46 has been special to my heart and for Alfie specifically, Romans 8:28. We really believe he is a warrior for God and know God has a purpose and plan for his life. Prayer has been constantly had throughout the world, so when we have been sleeping we know he has been covered. We are overwhelmed with gratitude!”
Alfie has a long way to go, and we are not certain what his future holds. BUT, we know WHO holds his future! Paul and Victoria are wonderful examples of praying for Alfie, and thanking God for all He has done. Peace is keeping their hearts and minds guarded as they live one day at a time in Christ Jesus. Oswald Saunders says it so well: “Peace is not the absence of trouble, but the presence of God.” He doesn’t leave us as orphans, but has given us His Holy Spirit to enable us and give us His peace.
I will continue to pray Philippians 4:6,7 over you all. Pray it over yourself, pray it over your family. Pray it over little warrior Alfie and his family. May our Lord Jesus grant you his peace this week.
Love, Kathy x