Consider this article more of an invitation than a devotional or an encouragement. One of my challenges during the upheaval of covid-19 is finding space for peace. Stress piling on as normal routines are blown away as work and worry invade my home life. The Bible invites us to “dwell on these things”; to meditate on His word, works, and wonderfulness.
Let’s use Philippians 4:8 as a guide for our thoughts. “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” (Philippians 4:8, NASB95)
For a few moments, find a place of quiet. Consider first all that is true right now. Push aside the rumors, the “could be,” the fears, and find one or two or three true things. God’s attributes come to my mind, His love and grace that is always present.
Next, consider honorable things. Those deeds of goodness you may have heard about. Push aside the silliness and fear-mongering to see God’s creative leading of folks to be honorable, helpful, and kind.
Our next marker on this path is “whatever is right.” There are layers here to be explored and pondered. Those times when justice does prevail. But also, the rightness and solid footing of God’s word. What verses come to mind? What right thing is the Holy Spirit whispering in the depths of your heart?
Around the corner, we find the invitation to ponder that which is pure. I suggest beginning with God, for nothing and no one is purer. This may be a good place to consider how God is changing us, bringing us from corruption to purity through Jesus.
Our next station invites us to consider “whatever is lovely.” Beauty is all around us. Not only the beauty of a flower or the forest, but also the beauty of words, creativeness, and thoughtfulness. Grace is perhaps the greatest of God’s beautiful creative works. Dwell on these.
Our next to the last invitation is to consider those things of “good repute” or admirable. Perhaps another way to look at this is trustworthiness. Who and what in your life is trustworthy? How has God demonstrated His trustworthiness? How have others in your life demonstrated their trustworthiness? Don’t dwell on the failures of others or yourself. Knowing where our trust is anchored has a stabilizing effect on our faith and emotions.
Finally, express praise and thankfulness for all that you discovered and pondered. There’s something about the giving of praise and thanksgiving, which alters the deep places of our soul.
I truly hope that this quiet moment gave you strength and a greater connection with Jesus. Just taking the time to write this has returned that sense of peace in Christ for me. Blessings to you all.