Be anxious for nothing, 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 minds through Christ Jesus.
One of the things I found most difficult when I became a Christian was learning how not to be anxious or worried about things. Every time something troubling occurred I would worry, or at the very least try to figure out how to make things work so that I didn't have to worry anymore.
When I ran across the above verse in my Bible I couldn't understand how prayer and thanksgiving would make my worries go away. As far as supplication went - well...it took me a while to figure out what that even meant. So, let's look at these two verses and find out what they are really saying.
Be Anxious for Nothing
In Greek, the word for "anxious" is merimnaō and it means to be "careful" or "have care", "take thought" or "concern." And the word "nothing" in Greek is mēdeis and means "nobody, no one or nothing." So, we are being told to be careful with our concerns and worries. In other words, don't be overcome by your worry. Okay . . . but how do we do that exactly? By keeping this verse in context.
The verse immediately before this says, "Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand." So the key to not being anxious or too concerned about something is to remember the Lord is near. Gentleness in the KJV is actually translated as moderation. So there is also a measure of moderation to how much we should be concerned about when life throws us a curve ball. If we are confident that Jesus lives within us through the power of the Holy Spirit, then we know we can trust Him to lead us and guide us during tumultuous times. To put more concern on our worries and fears gives more power to the devil and we know that God does not give us a spirit of fear (2 Timothy 1:7). When worry and fear are your constant companions you are saying to God that you don't trust Him. I understand that feeling of letting go of the reins and allowing God to do what needs to be done, but it is the key to not worrying.
So how do we get rid of fear and worry?
At some point in time you have to say, "Okay, Lord. I trust you in all things. I know you have a plan that is best for me. I submit to your plan for my life and trust in your love and guidance." And if those fears and worries rise up to overtake us, how do we combat them? We remember first that God is not the one who brings worry and fear into our lives. It is Satan trying to do all that he can to take our focus off God. So how did Jesus rebuke Satan? With Scripture. How do we rebuke fear and worry? The same way. Try memorizing these verses for starters: Isaiah 41:10; 2 Timothy 1:7; 1 John 4:18; Psalm 23; Psalm 34:4; Psalm 56:3-4; Romans 8:15 and of course Philippians 4:6-7.
But in Everything by Prayer and Supplication,