Christ is our Strength

Always be full of joy in the Lord; I say it again, rejoice! Let everyone see that you are unselfish and considerate in all you do. Remember that the Lord is coming soon. Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your needs and don't forget to thank him for his answers. If you do this you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. Hid peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest as you trust in Christ Jesus.

And now, brothers, as I close this letter lat me say this one more thing: Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about. Keep putting into practice all you learned from me and saw me doing, and the God of peace will be with you.

How grateful I am and how I praise the Lord that you are helping me again. I know you have always been anxious to send what you could, but for a while you didn't have the chance. Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to get along happily whether I have much or little. I Know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of contentment in every situation, whether it be a full stomach or hunger, plenty or want; for I can do everything God asks me to with the help of Christ who gives me the strength and power. Philippians 4: 4-13 (TLB)

Ysanny Luciano Guzman comes from the Dominican Republic. Her grandfather was the only father figure in their home and the main provider. He owned a butcher shop, and Ysanny remembers that they always had the best choice of meats for their meals. They always had their uniforms, shoes, and supplies for the school year. Though they were not wealthy, they never lacked for anything.

Everything was going well until her grandfather suffered a heart attack and died before they could get him to the hospital. His death was painful for all the family. They had no one to care for them or for the business that they did not know how to manage. over time, they lost the business because of mounting debt. Where once they enjoyed a comfortable life, they now experienced deprivation.

In one of the Bible studies in which Ysanny participated with the church youth group, they studied Paul's letter to the Philippians. Paul, a servant of God, endured much adversity, yet he remained firm in giving thanks and praise to God.

And so, by placing their trust and faith in Christ's strength, their family turned the corner; they survived! They knew that God would provide what they needed and would help them overcome their adversity.

And so it is with us; if we believe and trust, God will provide and help us overcome.

Prayer: Merciful God, thank you for helping us overcome our troubles and for giving us family and loved ones, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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