“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus…Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me – put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.”
Philippians 4:4-7, 9
These are amazing words to be writing from a prison cell. Paul had overcome his circumstances by the power of the Holy Spirit and he was filled with joy, gentleness, peace, thanksgiving, and prayer. The Philippian church was birthed in another testimony of overcoming when Paul and Silas were worshiping while in chains in the Philippi city jail. An earthquake shook the prison (Acts 1), but a greater spiritual earthquake was shaking the city. The peace of God, in the midst of persecution and suffering, was setting people free, including the Philippian jailer and his family. This jailer became part of the church that received this letter from Paul, sent from another prison in Rome. They had seen Paul and those with him as they suffered in Philippe, and they learned to worship, pray, and call out to the Lord in the same way. Our lives continue to speak louder than our words.
“Lord Jesus, thank you today for joy, peace, and gentleness, which all come from you, for your glory.”