3 Simple Steps to Peace


Simple steps to peaceHave you ever wondered what to do when peace seems elusive?

Three women emailed me recently to ask how they can find peace.

One is struggling with an ex husband who won’t pay child support. Another lost her job. And a third is waiting upon God for a husband.

Like joy, which at times feels elusive, peace is not about our circumstances. Peace is about leaning into the One who controls our circumstances, and trusting that He knows exactly what He’s allowing.

Philippians 4:6-7 tells us how we can experience peace regardless of our circumstances:

“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 (NLT).”

Did you notice the three-step formula for peace that is found within that verse?

Step 1: Don’t worry about anything. God’s Word tells us straight-out not to stress, worry, or be fearful in any situation. Instead we are to…

Step 2: Pray about everything. Nothing is beyond God’s ability to govern. So get in the practice of taking everything to Him in prayer the minute it starts to become a burden. Tell Him specifically what it is you need. He already knows. But by telling Him, you are showing Him that you trust Him and are depending on Him. As you do…

Step 3: Express  gratitude for all that you have. Nothing slams us back into perspective quicker than remembering what we have already been given. I keep a ring on the wall next to my desk and add a slip of Blessing ring to help me find peacepaper to the ring every time God blesses me with something or brings to my mind something He’s done for me or a family member. On days when I begin to feel that life is rough, I glance at that ring. (At the end of the year, my family and I take turns reading each of the slips on that ring at an annual “Thanksgiving to God” dinner that we enjoy together.) As you and I thank God for what He has already done, we will remember all that He still can do. And when we’re grateful, we’re acknowledging that God is in control and nothing takes Him by surprise.

I love how the Bible points out exactly what happens as we choose to worry about nothing and instead, pray about everything, with a grateful heart:

“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Phil. 4:7, ESV).

There it is. An incomprehensible peace will form an impenetrable shield around your heart and mind as you keep taking your requests before your Heavenly Father.

Can you follow those steps and find your peace today?

Cindi
About me

Cindi McMenamin is an award-winning author and national speaker who helps women find strength for the soul. She has nearly 30 years experience ministering to women and inspiring them to let God meet their emotional needs, grow stronger through their alone times, and pursue their dreams with boldness.

19 Comments

Kimberly
Reply September 8, 2015

Oh, Cindi, your timing is always so perfect. I am having such a hard time with my "little one" going off to middle school. He is actually doing very well- I am just not ready to follow him into his next big stage of life. He is such an incredible blessing- I couldn't imagine my life without him- I am just afraid to let him go. I thank God for him constantly and pray for God to protect him, I just need to trust God to take care of him and me, so I can find God's peace. Thank you, Cindi, for reminding me of God's peace, and if you could, please pray that I will remember to ask Him for all I need.

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 8, 2015

    Wonderful to hear from you, Kimberly, and thank you for those words of encouragement. It's good to know this topic is timely in your life today. :) I am praying for you, this morning, that you will continue to worry about nothing, but instead pray about everything that pops into your mind in terms of fears, worries, and concerns. Your Lord knows it all. He just wants you to know that He knows it all. :) You're a great candidate for reading my next book, "Ten Secrets to Becoming a Worry-Free Mom" which is now going to release in March, 2016. Thanks, again, for your comments, Kimberly.

Amber Paulsen
Reply September 9, 2015

Dear Cindi, Wow! God's timing amazes my heart! :D I had just watched a youtube video by JJ Heller about her story behind her song "Daylight" and found out she struggles with panic attacks. .. which I had no idea. I read a comment under her video where a woman said (regarding panic attacks), "it's a process God can use for His glory". I said something like "thank you God that even if I have a panic attack, You are able to use it for Your glory", then a second or two, I got your email "3 Simple Steps to Experiencing Peace, not Panic". :) So thankful for your ministry and how God's Spirit uses you to bless me and fill me with His truth.

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 9, 2015

    Thank you for your encouragement this morning, Amber. I didn't put that title on the blog I sent out, I just called it "3 Simple Steps to Peace." but for some reason, I changed the title to include the words "not panic" when I sent out the newsletter. Now I know why. :) God loves you THAT much, girl, to change my title so it specifically speaks to your need. He is so worthy of our gratitude and praise...and for the little ways He lets us know that what we struggle with is on His mind, as well. Blessings and PEACE on your day today, my friend.

AbidingWife
Reply September 9, 2015

Hi Cindi.
There are too many things to say here, in thanksgiving to God and you for your ministry. What I will say is that I'm glad I received this notification this morning. I need it more than I think I realize.
My husband has been lying to me more and more frequently; and I know it's because of a certain female with whom he's cheated on me (& continues to involve himself inappropriately). I have been going to God first, as you mentioned time and again. In doing so, I have gained the strength to forgive often. This morning while we were on the phone, however, he told me a bold-faced lie (as I heard who I believe in my heart was her walk through our front door). I'm not here to accuse my husband. There is already an Accuser who gladly does that of all of us before the Lord. What I am asking for is prayer for us both, Cindi. My heart sunk this morning, and I instantaneously got a migraine. I have been sitting in my office sobbing all morning. I'm trying to give this to God; but how do I pray (and not panic) when my husband, marriage and family are under attack right before my eyes?
I'm so weak from the mental and emotional pain that I don't know how much more I can bear. Sometimes I feel too weak to pray (or panic). In those times...these times, I simply withdraw and shut down.
Your post is encouraging to me; and I thank you for it. I just don't have the strength to pray alone. So, please pray for and with me tha God will turn my husband's heart to HIM (God), God will remove that female, heal my breaking heart & restore my marriage and family. Thank you. God bless you!

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 9, 2015

    I am praying for you, dear sister, right now...and I know others who see this post will be doing the same. Lord Jesus, fill Your daughter with Your incomprehensible peace right now and wrap her up in it like a blanket. Shield her from the pain this man is willingly and consciously inflicting upon her. Give her Your wisdom in how she needs to respond to this situation and show tough love that demands the sanctity of marriage be protected. t the same time, I pray your Holy Spirit would deeply convict her husband for his betrayal and cause him to come face to face with his need to repent fully to You and to his wife. Lord, do what it takes to remove that woman from her interference in this marriage and to bring this man to a deep regret for his actions. I also pray that You, God, would bring strong believers to intervene, support, and help this marriage be restored. Thank You, Jesus, for the peace You will give her and the encouragement you will bring her today from friends who will pray alongside her. IN Jesus' name, Amen." Please, my friend, open up to another believing woman in your church or a pastor or women's ministry director who can pray alongside you and get you the spiritual support you need at this time...and who can remind you that you are not alone.

      AbidingWife
      Reply September 9, 2015

      Thank you, so much, for praying for me...us, Cindi! It means far more than you know to have you approach the throne with and for me (and all that's going on).
      As I only see him a few times out of the year, I stay very busy with our toddler, while trying to manage home and work. We recently moved to a new place; and, as such, I have no home church yet or friends. I know that this (more than likely) makes it that much harder for me. This is one of the reasons I thank God for your blog (and your book "When Women Walk Alone"). The have been the "friend" you speak of, to me--helping me to refocus my attention on the Friend and Husband who is loving me through this.
      So, thank you! thank you! thank you! May God continue to bless and keep you as you continue to serve Him by pouring His love into our lives.

        StrengthSoul
        Reply September 9, 2015

        Thank you for your sweet words. I'm glad that book of mine has been there for you. You may really be helped about now by my book "Letting God Meet Your Emotional Needs" as well as my newest book, "When God Sees Your Tears." Keep in touch. I do care.

      AbidingWife
      Reply September 9, 2015

      Cindi, I also wanted to thank you for praying for my husband. While he is CHOOSING to sin, God still died for him also, and loves him with an everlasting love. I realize that "we wrestle not against flesh and blood"; and, I don't even think my husband realizes how much the enemy is trying to "sift" him and our family. I've never exercised "tough love" as you mentioned in your initial reply; and I wouldn't even know what that looks like in all this. But, I pray that God give me the quiet and gentle spirit He speaks of in 1 Peter 3 that can win him over for Christ. I just wanted to say thank you for having a prayerful spirit for him, and not a condemning one.

Lorinda Frahm
Reply September 12, 2015

I blog quite often and I truly appreciate your information. The article has truly peaked my interest. I’m going to bookmark your blog and keep checking for new details about once a week. I opted in for your Feed as well.

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 13, 2015

    Thank you, Lorinda. I hope you're encouraged through what you find here.

Becky
Reply September 13, 2015

Dear Cindi,

Thank you so much for the post "3 Simple Steps to Peace, not Panic". Such timely words! The past couple of weeks have been 'heavy' with false accusations from students to my line manager at workplace. But when I read these blog, it was a very strong reminder of how God gives a solution before a situation arises. Thanks Cindi for the way you brought out the message. It has encouraged me to keep moving on.

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 14, 2015

    I'm glad you were encouraged, Becky. And I love the way you worded that: "God gives a solution before a situation arises." ")

cesilia
Reply September 14, 2015

Hi Cindi, thank you so much for your blog! I so can relate to the sister with the husband who willfully is in sin with another woman . I am going through that as well still . He is living with her like she is his wife and still married to me. I truly believe we are in the last days. Satan is on the rampage ! He never sleeps! He so deceives and if we are not in prayer and in God's word , we can fall too . We will eventually divorce , he has made it clear that divorce is his only option , he is the unfaithful one. Please keep me in prayer this is a very hard time in my life . And keep him in prayer as well . I also have prayed God remove this woman out of the way. I honestly don't know if I could ever trust him again . This is the second time , who knows if there has been more . I do pray for his soul , that he does come to a place of repentance before it's too late for him. I so need your prayers to keep my strength in Christ and to keep persevering in Him. Thank you ! ! God bless you ! !

    StrengthSoul
    Reply September 15, 2015

    Cesilia, thank you for continuing to share with me the burden on your heart. You are in my prayers today. "Lord, give Cesilia Your strength and Your hope at this time when she feels she doesn't have any. Remind her that You are still God over all earth and heaven....the One who reigns, the One who puts all things in subjection under Your feet. Remind her that if You are for her, nothing can be against her. Please bring her husband to repentance...break him so that he no longer breaks Your heart and hers. And above all, please comfort her with the truth that she is Your beloved and You will make all things right." Be encouraged, Cesilia, my friend. You are not alone.

Chery
Reply October 20, 2015

I love the three steps! Especially the way you broke them down. I always like to read your reader's comments for further growth. It pains me to read of these dear sister's sufferings. But, thank you Lord, I can pray for them. I am so blessed for my Heavenly Father's listening ear<3

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