The keys to Joy and Peace begin with proper expectation. Believers are in a spiritual warfare and hence expect to have attacks on our peace and joy. We need to have the right understanding of Peace and Joy. The enemies are our flesh(self-determination without God), world (Now'ism) and devils. We are to overcome them by presenting our needs to God with thanksgivings, focus our thoughts on the true and right, preaching the gospel to our hearts and follow the Bible. Seeing the providence of Jesus, our 'blesser', in every circumstances and not on the blessings.The Bible Study Group discussion on "Peace and Joy" is based on Tim Keller's Sermon from:
http://podbay.fm/show/352660924/e/1365623752 Peace– Overcoming Anxiety
- A lot of us are cast down because we don't expect the attacks on our peace and joy that are inevitable. Much of the depression we experience is depression over our depression. We're sad that we're sad. We're surprised that we're surprised. We're upset that we're upset. Part of being upset is the anger, the guilt, and the frustration we experience as we say, "It's not supposed to be like this!" The Bible takes a positive but realistic view toward facing and overcoming the very real adversaries to inner peace.
- Ref: Phil 4:4-9
Questions for Reflections and Sample Answers:
A member brought up a sad and challenging story of a friend (not a Christian yet) with a child suffering from cancer. Could we share that God will heal her child if she receives Jesus as Savior? After some discussion, it is suggested that sharing the 'truth' is more important than 'baiting'. It is lot more important to know the truth of Christ's suffering and salvation, reveal the love of God, and to entrust the mother and child into the hands of the loving God. Let's God's love and his Spirit minister to the them, that they, and especially the mother, has the strength and peace to care for her child. We can still pray for a miracle to happen to the child. But it is more important that the eternal destination is ensured. Let discern God's will together; praying and caring together and commit all to God and trust that no matter what, God know and work out best for all.
Lim Liat (c) 10 May 2013