Anxiety is an epidemic in our society. We live in an age where we are overwhelmed with worry and bombarded with fear tactics. Our lives are left with no room to enjoy the peace that God intends for us to experience. Only honest, heartfelt prayer has the ability to shift our focus from an anxious thought to the God of peace - Pastor Dave
Open: Describe a time you were worry-filled: What were the circumstances? What made this event an anxious event?
Read: Philippians 4:4-9; Matthew 6:24-34; 1 Peter 5:7; Hebrews 13:5-6
1. In what ways do you see anxiety displayed in epidemic proportions? Why do you believe anxiety and worry are at an all-time high? What are some things that make Americans anxious? What makes you anxious? Do you believe the following statement is true: “82% of the things we worry about never happen!” Why or why not?
2. What sorts of things occupy your mind? How does your preoccupation with these things affect your relationships? How does it affect your joy in the Lord? How does it affect your relationship with the God of peace?
3. What does Paul give as the prescription to overcome anxiety? Describe the progression of prayer in Philippians 4:6-7: What role does gratitude play in our prayers? What makes thankfulness so difficult in our anxious moments? How does your circumstance look different when you face it with worry compared to facing it as God prescribes here?
4. God doesn’t promise a quick or easy solution to our worry. Instead, He offers His peace. What is the difference between “peace with God” and the “peace of God”? How is peace with God a better promise than the promise to a resolution to your worrisome situations? What are some things that keep us from peace?
5. Paul gives us a plan that calls us to shift our focus. Describe this shift? How does having the “who” help us to worry less about the “what”? How have you seen this true in your life? Describe the eight characteristics in Philippians 4:8: Which one stands out to you most?
Pray: Pray that you would shift your mind from the places of anxiety to the person of God.
Memorize/Meditate: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 O