While working through Philippines 4:7 this past week, I began journaling all the times that I could recount I’ve really felt that peace of God. This passage says, “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and mind through Christ Jesus.” Those prominent times in my life have been when I felt the Lord calling me to do something like…
- Quitting work, staying home with my kids and starting a business.
- The decision to homeschool my kids.
- Having a hard conversation with someone
- Moving to the mission field.
- Starting a clinic in the poorest area of Haiti.
If you take out the who/which clause in the middle, the verse says, “the peace of God will guard your hearts and mind through Christ Jesus.” When God has called me to do something and I walked in faith with Him, there has been this peace that comes. I know it’s not about my ability or my resources; it is about Him choosing to do the work through me and He always provides the means as well. Sometimes people won’t understand His way or His call and that’s ok. Many times those who care just want to make sure I’m making the right decision. In my feeble attempt to explain to others what the Lord was calling me to do, there have been times I have let my pride get in my way and I have failed God at times giving Him the glory for the work He was doing through me. However, that peace came in my decision to say yes to God and that peace has guarded my heart and mind when others may not of understood my decision to follow God. That peace came in my decision to be obedient. That peace came because I was ready to put action to my decision in following Him.
It is always wise to listen when someone who loves you and wants the best for you questions a decision you are making. It’s good to seek godly counsel. We can be off track sometimes. I can also recount times when the counsel I was given was godly and I let my pride and strong will get in the way. Discernment takes a humble obedient heart, a relationship with the Lord and time in the Word.
The Bible talks about 3 different great attributes of peace. Paul uses one of these in the introduction of his letters. He talks about the peace from God. Paul reminds us that peace is a gift from the Lord. There is also this peace with God that is defined through our relationship with Jesus and what he did for us on the cross. And then there is the peace of God that verse 4:7 describes as greater than any understanding that we have as man. It’s indescribable. It just must be experienced. This verse also says that this peace will guard our hearts. This peace will either give you what you need to push on or it will help you to stand back and say maybe I need to wait or maybe there is something I need to learn from this.
We have been trying to start a new malnutrition clinic in Cite Soleil for over a year. Unrest in the area and COVID have prevented us moving forward with it. When we felt the Lord calling us to this, we also thought this was a crazy idea! Cite Soleil is the poorest area in Haiti. Many of the people there have no way out of a bad situation. When Cite Soleil was presented to us, I began to look at the amount of kids that came to our current clinic from that area. About 70% of the people we were treating were coming from this area, so it seemed logical that geographically this would be a great place to have a clinic. We had a liaison that was willing to work with us, who had a secure compound there, but the area presented some problems with the ability to get down there on a regular basis due to security. So the Lord, provided a nurse in the area that if we were not able to get there she would be able to hand out the food for the kids in the program. The Lord has also provided a Haitian doctor to work along side of us in the malnutrition clinic. Almost a year ago, the Lord provided a man who donated the supplies and labor for all of our benches, tables and cabinets. Recently, the Lord provided a church that financed all the medical supplies and medications that we would need. So, it seems God has confirmed in my heart, in his provision, in his word and through much prayer that this is where we are to go. Troy and I have done all that we can to prepare and have the things and people in place to go. This past week we were supposed to go down and set up the clinic, but we weren’t able to go because of the unrest there, so again we wait on God’s timing. Even though there has been many obstacles I know the Lord can clear the way for us to go when he chooses if it’s his will to have this clinic there. I know Troy and I have done all that we can to try to be obedient in having everything prepared to go. Now it is up to God to part the way to make it happen. And you know what, we are content with whatever he chooses. There is a peace in knowing we have done all that we know to be obedient. And whatever he chooses to do through us, we are at peace with. ~Gwyn