Prayer is a Bridge Between Panic and Peace
Rachel and I enjoyed a wonderful early morning time with Carol this week. During our time, she showed us a small card that had a sentence typed on it that captured my attention: “Prayer is the bridge between panic and peace.” Since reading that sentence on Monday, I have thought about it every day, maybe ten times every day. Maybe you’ll be willing to take a moment now to meditate on prayer being a bridge between panic and peace.
I appreciate memorable, repeatable phrases such as the 3 P’s in the sentence – prayer, panic and peace. Yet, I immediately wondered about the use of the word “panic.” Is that the right word or was it chosen for the letter P? One definition of panic is a sensation of fear, which is able to prevent reason and logical thinking, replacing it with feelings of anxiety consistent with a fight-or-flight reaction.
The Gospel reveals that God created us for a life of peace with him. We experience peace as we by faith believe that God is in control, He is all-knowing, all-powerful and sovereign over every circumstance and person. Yet, our sinfulness interrupts that faithful confidence which allows us to experience God’s peace. Instead, it’s our limited faithfulness that ushers in panic. When we in a moment don’t believe by faith that God is in control, all-knowing, all-powerful and desiring our good, we feel sensations of fear leading us to flee from faithfully doing the next obvious thing the Lord is pointing us toward or using words to pick a fight.
As the Spirit reveals our faithlessness in moments of panic, let’s confess them to the Lord knowing He is faithful to forgive. These faithless moments of panic disrupt our walk with the Lord. As we walk closely with the Lord, we can whisper in prayer every sensation of fear we are experiencing, we can whisper in prayer how we desire to run from doing the right thing and we can whisper in prayer every fighting word our sinful nature desperately wants to say. The Lord tells us He is able to absorb all of our panic, so that we have absolutely no need to act on our faithless panic toward other people.
Prayer is a bridge between panic and peace. If we truly desire to experience the peace of God, then we accept His invitation to pray and talk with God when we desire to run or fight.
This month, there are a few opportunities to mediate on the prayer bridge. Many people have decided to read Power Through Prayer by E.M. Bounds. You can read this book for free at the Ethereal Library or purchase the book quite inexpensively. Would you join us for two prayer gatherings: Sunday, November 11 from 5-6:30pm; we are gathering in the South auditorium to pray for our church, pray for global outreach and pray for our local outreach to Rockwood. On Friday, November 16 at 7pm at New Hope Community Church in Happy Valley; people from a number of local churches are gathering for prayer. You can find out more at www.onepdx.org.
Every day, as you experience a sensation of panic, anxiety, worry or fear, whisper those thoughts and feelings to the Lord, and you will experience God building a bridge to take you from panic to peace.