Let’s face it, sometimes life is hard. Jesus tells us that in this world we will have difficulties, but He tells us to be of good cheer, see John 16:33. How is it possible to be full of good cheer when we are facing an onslaught of negativity? Philippians 4:8-9 shows us how, “Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. The things which you learned and received and heard and saw in me, these do, and the God of peace will be with you.” Let’s look at what the Holy Spirit revealed to the apostle Paul concerning this.
- He says, “Finally, brethren, (God’s people) whatever things are true.” No matter how difficult the situation, truth is what will set you free. “And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” John 8:32.
- Whatever things are noble, (honest, honorable). “The integrity of the upright guides them,
but the unfaithful are destroyed by their duplicity. Proverbs 11:3. Honesty sets you free, learn to be honorable in all that you do.
- Whatever things are just, (righteous, observing divine laws). “Whoever pursues righteousness and love finds life, prosperity and honor.” Proverbs 21:21. Righteousness is defined throughout God’s Word, and if you will pursue His ways you will harvest righteousness.
- Whatever things are pure, (innocent). “Do all things without grumbling or disputing; so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world.” Think, speak, and act out innocence in your life, and you will have God’s peace. Philippians 2:14-15. And it is noteworthy to add Matthew 10:16, “Behold, I send you out as sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and innocent as doves.” Jesus warns us to be spiritually wise, but innocent in our actions. When we act with hostility, or out of vengeance we lose our peace.
- Whatever things are lovely, (acceptable, pleasing). 2 Corinthians 10:5, “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.“ Think about what you are thinking about. Are your thoughts pleasing to God? Are they filled with godliness or selfishness and rebellion? Do they compromise the Word of God? If Jesus were to read your thoughts right now would you feel embarrassment or approval?
- Whatever things are of a good report, (reputable, auspicious, conducive to future success, favorable, prosperous, encouraging). Isaiah 53:7 proclaims, “How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of those who bring good news, who proclaim peace, who bring good tidings, who proclaim salvation, who say to Zion, “Your God reigns!”” We are to focus on what’s good, that does not mean we ignore what’s happening around us, but that we are to listen to those that deliver hope, and better yet be the ones to carry hope to those that have lost their way, and release the healing power of hope that mends the brokenhearted in this world. If you fill yourself with negative reports and images you eventually will lose your peace and joy. You may need to turn off the local news media, and take a sabbath from social media. If you have peace robbers around you, you may need to tell them to stop their negativity when they are around you, and if they are unwilling to change their ways you need to just kindly walk away.
- If there is any virtue, (moral goodness and excellence, modesty and purity). “Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.” 1 Corinthians 15:33. You need to free yourself from doubt and confusion that no matter what the current opinion of society may be, your morals do not come from the world, but from God’s Word. You, yourself are to study the 10 commandments to learn of moral goodness and excellence found in Exodus 20, and live by God’s ways.
- You shall have no other gods before Me.
- You shall not make for yourself an idol.
- You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
- Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
- Honor your father and mother.
- You shall not murder.
- You shall not commit adultery.
- You shall not steal.
- You shall not lie.
- You shall not covet.
And Jesus’ response in regards to the great commandment from Matthew 22:36-40, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”
When Jesus says, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment.“, He is referring to the first four commandments. And the remaining six are how to treat others. If you will live out the 10 Commandments we will have the peace of God reigning in your life.
- If there is anything praiseworthy, (laudation, the act of praising, commendable, deserving attention or approval). “Study and do your best to present yourself to God approved, a workman [tested by trial] who has no reason to be ashamed, accurately handling and skillfully teaching the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15 AMP. We are to wield our thoughts, conversations, deeds to those things that are praiseworthy and deserving of our attention and approval. Again, if we will do life God’s way, we will walk in His peace.
- And lastly, we are to meditate on these things, (to reckon inward, count up, weigh the reasons, to deliberate). If we will weigh the things of life according to God’s Word we will receive His peace about the situation. “Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.“ Joshua 1:8. And this is the good report that Paul admonishes us with that creates the spiritual atmosphere to dwell in God’s peace, that only manifests by living God’s way.
Becky Dvorak is a prophetic healing evangelist and the Destiny Image author of DARE to Believe, Greater Than Magic and The Healing Creed. Visit her at authorbeckydvorak.com.