” . . . whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable . . . think about these things.”- Philippians 4:8-9
As Timothy Keller continues Chapter 15 of Walking with God through Pain and Suffering, he reminds us that the peace of God is not a natural ability, but something we learn. Pastor Keller adds that St. Paul speaks of three disciplines in which to engage. The first discipline is presented today.
1. The discipline of thinking. Pastor Keller notes that Paul uses the word logizdomai– meaning “to reckon” or “to count up”- to describe how we are to think about “these things”. The Lutheran Study Bible notes that we continually are to keep “these virtues, which are the fundamental ideals of life according to God’s design, in the forefront of our minds, in our very consciousness, so they inspire and guide all we do.”
In other words, Pastor Keller states, Paul is saying that if we truly want peace, we need to think long and hard about the core doctrines of the Bible as well as the big issues of life. Peace comes from intentional, intense thinking through the implications of what we believe, thinking big and high from the deliberate occupation of a vantage point. As Jonathan Edwards summarized in the earliest extant manuscript we have from him- entitled “Christian Happiness”- our bad things will work out for good, no one can take away our good things, and the best is yet to come.
Today’s question: During your healing, transformational journey, what has most dominated your thinking? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “The discipline of thanking”