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JFH Devotionals by J.M. Farro

Power to Keep Calm

"That You may give him power to keep himself calm in the days of adversity."
- Psalm 94:13 AMP

When three of my husband's doctors confirmed the presence of what they believed to be a large cancerous growth in his neck, he was scheduled for a biopsy. The test couldn't be performed for several weeks, and during that time, we prayed and trusted God for Joeís total deliverance and healing. Though I wanted to be with my husband during the test, he asked me to stay home, promising that he would call me as soon as the test was over. That morning, during my quiet time with the Lord, I sensed Him instructing me to act calmly--showing no fear, worry, or panic to the dark forces, but only a peaceful, trusting manner. I read my Bible and prayed, as was my daily routine, and I ate my usual breakfast. As I forced myself to act peaceful on the outside, I began feeling peaceful on the inside. It helped me to pray in faith, and to clearly hear the Lord's voice. With the delay of Joe's call, every time I sensed fear rising up inside of me, I purposely did something outwardly to show that I was calmly trusting the Lord to take care of the situation.

At one point, I could almost hear the devil saying, "What's the matter with you? Don't you know that something's gone very wrong? Your husband hasn't called you yet. And the results of that test--they're even worse than anyone expected. You should be very, very afraid!" I confess that there were moments when I wanted to scream or cry, but instead, I reminded myself of the Lord's instructions, and I began declaring out loud: "I refuse to be afraid. I'm trusting God for the victory. He's got my husband in the palm of His hand right now, and Heís going to turn all this into something good for both of us. I don't have to worry one bit. God is in control, and I refuse to think negatively. I believe we'll see the glory of God!"

What we must never forget in hard times is that while faith opens the door for God to work, fear opens the door to Satan. That's why walking in peace is spiritual warfare. In Ephesians 6, when the apostle Paul tells us to put on the armor of God, he says: "Having shod your feet in preparation [to face the enemy with the firm-footed stability, the promptness, and the readiness produced by the good news] of the Gospel of peace." (Ephesians 6:15 AMP) God's kind of peace comes from believing the Gospel, receiving Christ as our Savior, and making it our goal to follow Christís example. Scripture talks about God giving His people the "power to keep [themselves] calm in the days of adversity." (Psalm 94:13 AMP) In a tense and scary situation, you can shut the door on the devil's efforts to harm you and yours, by asking the Lord to empower you to keep yourself calm.

The Bible tells us that God's kind of peace is "perfect peace," and it is rooted in a deep trust in Him. Isaiah 26:3 (NKJV) says: "You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You." Some people think that trust is a feeling or an emotion, but it's not. It's a decision. When we make a conscious decision to put our trust in God in a difficult situation, we are, in effect, telling Him: "I entrust this matter to You, Lord. I believe that You are all-good, all-wise, and all-powerful, and I'm looking to You for help." And as this verse says, keeping our minds "stayed" on God is an important part of the process. If we focus instead on our circumstances, ourselves, or other people, we will forfeit God's peace.

Though my husbandís call that day did come a lot later than I had hoped or expected, it was for a good reason. The extra time was needed to confirm that no growth could be found in my husband's neck, and he was, in fact, healed and whole. I believe that my staying in peace that day made all the difference. Imagine what God could do in YOUR situation if you trusted Him and remained in peace today.

Prayer: Lord, I want to be the overcomer that You created me to be. I know that walking in Your kind of peace is essential to my reaching that goal. When I'm tempted to become fearful in times of trouble, remind me that fear can rob me of Your best. Thank You that as I pursue peace in every circumstance, I will witness You working wonders on my behalf!

- J. M. Farro


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