Pause. Praise. Pray.
I like to remind myself of these three words whenever I’m facing some sort of inner confusion. You know that heavy feeling that sits deep in your heart. Or that weight that you feel you’re carrying on your shoulders. I’ve often heard the expression, ‘Let go and let God’. It’s a quirky little phrase but I struggle to grasp just how to ‘let go’ of all the things floating around my head.
As I spent time with God this week, the questions I steered in His direction had me feeling slightly overwhelmed and frustrated. I’m trusting God to come through for me in a few things, searching for answers to some questions I have on my heart.
I read one of my daily bible plans that encouraged me to just ‘Let go and let God’. But, what does that actually mean? The notion of just ‘letting go’ of my anxious thoughts sometimes proves to be more stressful than the thought itself. The ‘Let go and let God’ fallacy leaves me feeling even more frustrated.
So instead, I went searching in God’s Word for comfort and I stumbled upon this beautiful scripture.
“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” Philippians 4:6-7 MSG
“Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, then God’s wonderful peace that transcends human understanding will make the answers known to you through Jesus Christ.”
Philippians 4:6-7 TPT
It’s important to know that when we find ourselves in an uncomfortable position, Gods Word always proves to be faithful and grounding. His Word is a lamp that lights up our path in the most darkest of places. I love how Gods Word also encourages us and reassures us in times of chaos. Based on the scripture above, shown in two different translations, I would like to create a new method to encourage you when you’re feeling anxious or worried about life’s struggles. It’s called the three P method: Pause. Praise. Pray.
Philippians 4 encourages us to PAUSE. Instead of just ‘letting go’ and moving on – let’s pause – grab hold of our chaotic emotions, take those worrying thoughts captive and be intentional about stopping them in their tracks. As we grab hold of them, we can rebuke them with the authority that lies within us. When we stop and pause, we remind ourselves that worrying is not of God. When we pause, we begin to still the voices that echo so loudly in our heads and instead we make ourselves aware of the truths in Gods Word.
The next step is to PRAISE. Worry gets displaced when it is replaced by thankfulness. As we direct our heart towards God in an attitude of gratitude, our worries cease to exist. When we become thankful for everything God has done for us, our hearts go from a place of fear to a place of faith. As we begin to recognize what God has done for us, we stir up our heart up to remain in a place of rest. Resting in the understanding that God is God. And as we learn to praise God, we elevate Him to the rightful place in our hearts. Our worries get shifted and replaced by adoration for our King. A thankful heart is a powerful tool for a weary soul. A grateful heart heals a wounded spirit.
Next, Gods Word encourages us to PRAY! I love The Passion Translation version of this scripture. It calls us to saturate our day in prayer. To saturate means to soak thoroughly or completely. Soak and saturate yourself in prayer, surrendering your struggles into Gods faithful grip. There’s no rule against how much we can pray and God loves it when we talk to Him. To pray is to communicate with God. As we begin to share our hearts with Him and invite Him in, He begins to lift the heaviness that we sometimes feel.
The beautiful promise of this three P method is Gods perfect peace. God promises His peace. A peace that transcends all understanding will set our weary souls on solid ground. His peace engulfs our worrisome thoughts and fills our heart with a surety that God is in control.
So take a moment to pause, praise and pray.
His perfect peace follows when we choose to pause, praise and pray.