Today’s Readings:  click here  –  Psalm 17:1-7, 15; Isaiah 14:1-2; Philippians 4:10-15

(to open the scripture links – hover over, right click, open hyperlink)

This Psalm passage today, like many others, is a prayer. As there is a time to weep and a time to rejoice, so there is a time for praise and a time for prayer.  Here, we can dare to believe that  David was now persecuted, most likely by Saul, who hunted him like a flock on the mountains; with fierce battles and inward fears, both impelled him to plead his heart to the throne of mercy.  He calls for God to hear him and take refuge on him.  Psalm prayers are beautiful heartfelt tools to help navigate and guide us through any hardship or toil, joy or praise, through prayer

Our passage from Philippians today, embodies a very powerful, affirming and encouraging verse that many Christians draw strength from,  as well as confidence and contentment when faced with adversity, defeat, challenging struggles, weakness, uncertainty, doubt, discernment, even  persecution;   13’I can do all things because Christ gives me the strength’, and  37For nothing will be impossible with God’  (Luke 1:37) and  9Each time Jesus said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in your weakness.”  So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me  (2 Corinthians 12:9).

Philippians 4:13 as well as the other  scripture passages mirrored here, were a familiar dose of encouragement and power of positive thinking for our family as our kids were growing up and we were parenting.  With kids, often the struggle is very real, to achieve or accomplish goals they set and a common but not favorable word spoken is  ‘Can’t’ ;  I can’t do it, I just can’t. We taught them early on that when this word overshadows anything you are attempting to do… PRAY.. pray these words… I can do all things because Christ gives me the strength.  God never failed them.  Their eyes were so wide open to see first hand what they could do with God’s help, to never settle for less, defeat, failure, or unworthiness of any kind. 

This prayer conveyed unfailing positive attitudes, spiritual and mental clarity, and became our eclipsing factor upholding our family’s constant reminder of God’s love, strength and power to overcome any difficulty or trouble we faced. It truly was ‘Our Super Power’.  We believe these words to our very core. Both of the boys chose this scripture to be inscribed on their Confirmation stole. As a parent, it was so refreshing to see how they held tight and believed in  such power.  

Are you facing some tough times, decisions, distractions, or tasks of your own?  Start here with this prayer of powerful positive thinking: I can do all things because Christ gives me the strength.  Believe also that ‘Nothing is impossible with God’ (Matthew 19:26).  Let these be constant words in your heart and from your lips.  You will find strength to do, to not do, to overcome, to out do, out last whatever is set before you.  Making prayer and conversation with Jesus a ‘First’ go to, a priority is just an glimpse of what more our Father in Heaven has in store for us when we love and trust His Son, Jesus.  I say, ‘what can you lose’… in the eyes of our beholder… NOTHING!; but how much more we CAN lose if we don’t.

I found a delightful and uplifting commentary written on this Philippians passage with a focus on contentment,  ‘A Life of Contentment’.  It’s an encouraging read.  If you have time, I highly recommend it.   In depth commentary read; Philippians 4:1-15 Commentary by Steven J. Cole

Enjoy a few songs – let them speak to your heart this day.

‘I Can Do All Things’ – with worship motions

‘Feeling At Home in the Presence of Jesus’ by Gloria & William J. Gaither

‘Stronger’ by Hillsong Worship

‘You Are My Strength’ by Hillsong Worship

Prayer:   Lord Jesus, thank you for loving me enough to give me your strength through my weakness, direction when I am wandering, love when I am empty, clarity when I am blinded.  I find contentment, peace and strength in trusting and believing in you.  I know I am not alone on this journey and that comforts me.   AMEN!