Category Archives: Peace

Understanding The Solution To Pressure & Strain


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 2 Co 4:16-18 For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

  • A mind renewed by the Spirit of God with the truth of God is the only antidote for guilt, anxiety, anger, and despair. It is the only cure for a noisy soul.
  • Pressure = those things that weigh on us
  • Strain = the effect of the weight

Understanding Pressure and Strain

Pressure is first evaluated by the mind. The weight is determined by the mind.

When you get your school bill, it is first evaluated by the mind. If you have the money in your account, you withdraw and pay the bill and there is no pressure. If you don’t have money, your mind tells you that you have a real problem and you feel the strain.

Notice that the pressure is the same in both situations.

  • If the mind cannot deal with the pressure, it causes physical problems.
  • Our minds must evaluate the situation with the truth or we will have problems. If our problems are bigger than our God, we will struggle.

Persistent anxiety has negative effects (strain) on the body.

When we are mentally pressured, our body begins to feel it. The weight of the first beam when it cannot hold, is transferred to the second beam. Headaches, loss of sleep, loss of appetite, heart beats changing, stomach issues (can be caused by other issues too) all are made worse by our thoughts. It can lead to depression, boredom, listlessness, lack of interest, irritability, touchiness, fears, panic attacks.

A disciplined mind and body have greater ability to withstand pressure with fewer debilitating effects on either the mind or the body.

  • If there is some discipline, we can stand more pressure. If there is no mental discipline, some people just give up and quit.
  • A disciplined body can take more pressure as well.
    • We must have enough sleep.
    • We must have the right nutrition.
    • We must get enough exercise.

God, however, never intended for man to be able to handle the pressures of life on his own

  • This is true even if his mind and body are disciplined to the highest level. (Matt. 4:4; John 15:4-5; II Cor. 3:5, 4:7, etc.) Discipline of mind and body alone are very helpful, but never enough. God intended life to be lived in dependence on Him.
  • Most people only strengthen their lives in areas that they like. They leave things out. (fig. 3). No one gets just one pressure at a time. We have multiple boxes at the same time. The things we like, we manage ok. It is the other things.

Handling Pressure Biblically

Eliminate the pressures God does not intend for you to bear.

  • Eliminate sin and its results (Heb. 12:1; I Jn. 1:9; Eph. 4:22) – sin is supposed to pressure us.
  • Eliminate responsibilities you have assumed outside the will of God. Motivation for good activities can come from sinful lusts  (I Jn. 2:16).
  • God does not give grace for what God does not ask you to do. Saying “no” might be the most spiritual answer when someone asks you to minister in yet one more way.

Reinforce your mind so that it will withstand the weight of the pressures you bear in the will of God.

  • A disciplined body is helpful: adequate rest, nutritious diet, regular exercise
  • A renewed mind is essential.

The Result—A Different Way of Looking at Life and Its Pressures

      • A renewed mind possesses a Bible-taught and Spirit-illuminated belief that God is more than enough for me. See Figure 3.
      • A renewed mind possess a Bible-taught and Spirit illuminated belief that God is more than enough for me.
      • Pressure is all about evaluating the pressure against my belief in God’s goodness.
      • This takes much time. You have to know what God says. Saturation in the Word begins with an intentional plan.
      • It ends with what you believe about God.

Conclusion: You must spend much time beholding God if you are to have a renewed mind—and, thus, a quiet soul.

Download the pdf version The Solution here.

Thanks to Dr. Jim Berg for allowing us to use his material. Berg, Jim. (2005). Quieting a Noisy Soul. Greenville, SC: BJU Press

The Root Of Our Problems


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Today we want to discover how to unmask the source of your noise.  Our text is found in II Peter 1:2–3.

2 Pe 1:2-3 Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, According as his divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue:

Let’s break down the parts of this verse to be sure we understand what Peter is saying:

  • Grace and Peace are multiplied to us. Why do we struggle so much to find it?
  • Knowledge of God – this is the only way to get the peace God gives. This is a 
relational knowledge of God, not a factual knowledge.
  • All things – God left nothing out
  • Life and godliness – the chance to have eternal life and the ability to live godly all 
come from the same Source with the same power.  If we trust God totally for salvation, why can’t we trust Him totally for the power to live a godly life?

Someone going through this material recently told me that it is not logical to drop our focus on Scripture to fix our problems and pick up a focus on Scripture to know God. Yet this is exactly what II Peter 1:2-3 is telling us. Godliness comes from knowing Him!

The Nature of Truth

There are things that all people understand to be true through creation and through their own conscience (Romans 1:18–21, 25, 28, 32).

KJV Ro 1:18-21 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.

Note that the invisible things are clearly seen: His eternal power and Godhead

Ro 1:25 Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.

The natural bent of the unsaved heart is idolatry (anything that comes before God often revealed by where we spend out time). This tendency is not completely removed for the believer, we still have a deceitful heart (Jer. 17:9).

Definition: Truth = reality.

The Danger of Unbelief

A belief is what you accept to be true.

This can be things that are real or things that are fantasy. What we believe or don’t believe does not change the truth. Reality does not change. This is the way it is. There is never a situation where the facts on this side are not true.

Our situations do not change who God is. He is always good and always in control.

Unbelief is rejecting what God says is true.

You must labor to find out what is true according to God, resolutely 
reject any deviation from it, and cling to the things that are true about God no matter what is happening to you.

So how much do you want the peace? Are you ready to rearrange significant portions of your life to be able to have the time to “labor” to find the truth?

The Glory of God

Unbelief robs God of His glory (Romans 1:21).

His unique excellence is tarnished in our view. He becomes in our mind no better than the creatures He made—weak, untrustworthy, unloving, unkind, and unwise.

The temptation of the sinful heart is to “[exchange] the truth of God [for] a lie” (Romans 1:25).

Stabilizing Truths for Noisy Souls: The Knowledge of God

We encourage you to print a copy of “The Stabilizing Truths for Noisy Souls.” You can download it at this link. http:// www.QuietingANoisySoul.com/downloads/memory-cards.pdf.

Labor, labor, labor to know these truths—look up the above verses and find other verses that teach these truths.

  • Memorize these truths and verses that support them (Psalm 119:9–11).
  • Meditate upon these truths (I Timothy 4:15– 16).
  • Fellowship with others about these truths (I John 1:3).
  • Test every stray thought of your heart by these truths (II Corinthians 10:3–5).
  • Don’t despise preaching about these truths (II Timothy 4:2–4). THIS IS THE “LABOR.”

To reject truth is to believe a lie. THIS IS THE ONLY ALTERNATIVE!

So here we conclude for today: Unbelief is the primary cause of the noise in your soul. You do not yet see that God Himself is more than enough for you.

Thanks to Dr. Jim Berg for allowing us to use his material.
Berg, Jim. (2005). Quieting a Noisy Soul. Greenville, SC: BJU Press

27 Facts About Angels


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Christmas and angels seem to go together!  An angel appeared to Joseph (Mt. 1:20) to assure him that the pregnancy Mary was carrying was from God.  The angel Gabriel had appeared to Mary prior to her pregnancy informing her of God’s plan for her to carry Jesus, the Savior of the world (Lk 1:26).  And of course an angel appeared to the shepherds outside of Bethlehem announcing the birth of the Savior-King (Lk 2:9)!  After the announcement a host of angels appeared to the same shepherds saying, “Glory to God in the Highest, and on earth peace, good-will to men” (Lk 2:13)!

For whatever reason our culture is fascinated by angels!  Some people pray for angels to help them when they are in trouble.  Other people believe that their departed loved ones become angels after they die.

Christmas is a good time to think about angels – and a good time to find out what God’s Word teaches us about them.

Here are 27 helpful facts about angels from the Word of God.  (This chart is found in Wilmington’s Book of Bible Lists).

27 Facts about Angels

1. They are mentioned 273 times in 34 biblical books.
2. They were all created by God. Gen. 2:1; Neh. 9:6; Eph. 3:9; Col. 1:16
3. They report directly to God. Job 1:6; 2:1
4. They were present at the Creation of the world. Job 38:1, 4, 7
5. They announced Jesus’ birth to the shepherds. Luke 2:10–14
6. They do not marry. Matt. 22:30
7. They were created to live forever. Rev. 4:8
8. Their purpose is to glorify God. Rev. 4:8
9. Some angels help human beings. Heb. 1:14
10. Some angels harm human beings. Mark 5:1–5
11. They are spirit beings. Ps. 104:4; Heb. 1:7, 14
12. They are invisible beings. Rom. 1:18–32; Col. 2:18; Rev. 19:10; 22:9
13. They are innumerable. Deut. 33:2; Ps 68:17; Dan. 7:9–10; Matt. 26:53; Heb. 12:22; Rev. 5:11
14. They possess intelligence. Dan. 9:21–22; 10:14; Rev. 19:10; 22:8–9
15. They possess will. Isa. 14:12–15; Jude 6
16. They display joy. Job 38:7; Luke 2:13
17. They display desire. 1 Pet. 1:12
18. They are stronger than men. Ps. 103:20; 2 Thess. 1:7; 2 Pet. 2:11
19. They are more intelligent than men. Dan. 9:21–22; 10:14
20. They are swifter than men. Dan. 9:21; Rev 14:6
21. They are not omnipresent. Dan. 10:12
22. They are not omnipotent. Dan. 10:13; Jude 9
23. They are not omniscient. Matt. 24:36
24. Some are cherubim. Ezek. 1:1–28; 10:20
25. Some are seraphim. Isa. 6:1–8
26. The majority remained true to God. Rev. 5:11–12
27. They will join all believers in the heavenly Jerusalem. Heb. 12:22–23

Recovering From Grief


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The human capacity for grief is at times overwhelming! Time and again this year I have been face to face with people who are suffering deep grief.  In the past ten months I am aware of at least 10 ladies who husbands have passed away. Others have suffered the loss a son or daughter or parent.  Many are asking the question, “Will this ever get better?”

Recently I read an article written by June Hunt entitled, “Grief Recovery, Living At Peace With Loss.”  I share a portion of it here in hopes that it if you are grieving the loss of someone you loved, that you will find hope and comfort:

“Who has not questioned the reason for pain and suffering in the world? Certainly some people have become hardened by their losses, while others have become softened—God used their grief to cultivate in them tender, understanding hearts. Only days before His own death, Jesus traveled to the grave of Lazarus to comfort his two sisters in their loss. Jesus was not only deeply moved in His Spirit, but He was also weeping with Mary and Martha. It may seem paradoxical that Jesus—the Son of God, the one who turned water into wine, the one who multiplied the loaves and the fishes, the one who raised Lazarus from the dead—could not avoid grief in His own life. But the prophet Isaiah foretold that Christ, the coming Messiah, would be a man who would understand grief well for, indeed, He was … “A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.” (Isaiah 53:3)

What Is Grief?

  • Grief is the painful emotion of sorrow caused by the loss or impending loss of anyone or anything that has deep meaning to you. “Be merciful to me, O Lord, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and my body with grief.” (Psalm 31:9)
  • Grief begins in your heart as a natural response to a significant, unwanted loss.
  • Grief is a God-given emotion that increases with knowledge about the sorrows of life. The wiser you are about the grief that people experience, the more you yourself will grieve. “With much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief.” (Ecclesiastes 1:18)
  • In the New Testament, the Greek word lupe means “pain of body or mind. ”When Jesus told His disciples He would soon be betrayed and killed, they were filled with grief. The disciples were filled with grief.” (Matthew 17:23)

What Is Mourning?

  • Mourning is the process of working through the pain of sorrow that follows a significant loss. “Joy is gone from our hearts; our dancing has turned to mourning.” (Lamentations 5:15)
  • Mourning (also called grieving), is a normal, healthy process that lasts for a period of time. God uses mourning in order to produce the ultimate healing of deep distress and sorrow. “You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy.” (Psalm 30:11)
  • Mourning evokes compassion and expressions of comfort from others. When Lazarus died, Jesus and many others came to comfort Mary and Martha. “Many Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them in the loss of their brother.” (John 11:19)
  • In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word abal means “to mourn or lament. ”Jacob’s favorite son was Joseph. When Joseph’s brothers told their father, Jacob, that his favored son had been killed by a ferocious animal, Jacob went into deep mourning for days … and ultimately years.
    “Jacob tore his clothes, put on sackcloth and mourned for his son many days.” (Genesis 37:34)

What Are the Stages of Healthy Grieving?

Emotional complications occur when we block the natural process of grieving. Have you ever told yourself, I need to get my act together. I’ve got to snap out of it. I should be handling this better!

These self-incriminating thoughts reveal unrealistic expectations about grieving and a failure to understand the grief process and the slow journey of restoration. While “stages” of grief do exist, they are not “stair-step” stages that you walk through in a specific order. In truth, people do not go through all the stages in a predictable fashion. People are unique in their individual grieving. Some stages may be experienced with varying degrees of intensity, some may be missed, and some stages may be repeated.

Give yourself permission to experience the inconsistent stages of grieving … trusting God to bring new life again. “Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up.” (Psalm 71:20)

Crisis Stage

… can last from two days to two weeks. In this stage of grief, you are mechanically going through daily activities. You will experience many of the following characteristics:

  • anxiety/fear
  • appetite/sleep loss
  • concentration limited
  • confusion
  • crying uncontrollably
  • denial
  • disturbing dreams
  • exhaustion
  • feeling trapped
  • shock/numbness
    “My eyes will flow unceasingly, without relief.” (Lamentations 3:49)

Crucible Stage

… can last up to a year or two or more, perhaps even until death if grief is not resolved. This time of sorrow will be accompanied by many of the following characteristics:

  • anger/resentment
  • anguish
  • appetite/sleep loss
  • bargaining with God
  • depression/sadness
  • guilt/false guilt
  • helplessness/lethargy
  • judgment impaired
  • loneliness/isolation
  • low self-worth
  • self-pity/victim mentality
  • intense yearning
    “My soul is in anguish. How long, O Lord, how long?” (Psalm 6:3)

Contentment Stage

… accepts the loss, leaving it in the past. This stage not only accepts that the present offers stability, but also accepts that the future offers new and promising hope. As this time approaches, the following characteristics will become more and more apparent.

  • experiencing greater compassion toward others
  • experiencing greater acceptance of others
  • experiencing greater appreciation of others
  • experiencing greater humility before others
  • experiencing greater dependence on the Lord
  • experiencing new ability to leave the loss behind
  • experiencing new patterns for living
  • experiencing new purpose in life
  • experiencing new hope for the future
  • experiencing new contentment in all circumstances
     “One thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead.… For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.” (Philippians 3:13; 4:11)

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If you are suffering through the stages of grief take comfort in the fact that you are not alone!  God understands your grief, He loves you and will walk this path together with you.

If you are in the Kitwe area and you would like to discuss what you are facing right now, please get in touch with me on 0976153466 or email me at philhunt66@gmail.com.  I would be happy to meet with you.

Blessings, Phil Hunt