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Foundation Truth, Number 10 (Summer 2004) | Timeless Truths Publications

Spiritual Composure

Dear Sisters,

Does it seem at times that cares and troubles overshadow your life? There are so many tasks—doing everything you can to help nearly everybody you know, that you seem to drown in them? There are so many folks who are needy in their souls? There are those family differences in the religious sphere. There is the children’s schooling. There are financial needs. You have trouble even finding quiet time with the Lord. And the list goes on… but let’s stop and rest awhile today. I want to share this subject of spiritual composure which the Lord has given me in the midst of all my battles and struggles.

Composure is calmness and tranquillity; implying the disciplining of one’s emotions in trying situations or habitual self-possession in the face of excitement. Let’s see what the synonyms are: Equanimity implies an inherent evenness of temper or disposition that is not easily disturbed. Serenity implies a lofty, clear peace of mind that is not easily clouded by ordinary stresses or excitements.

Sounds wonderful doesn’t it? To many, I believe, it is just a dream, but the Lord does have this quality as part of our spiritual character. He not only has this gift for us, but He longs for us to have it. He wants us to trust Him.

Just recently I was disturbed about a situation. I couldn’t help it; the tears flowed. I was afraid for a certain individual. The decision appeared so full of risk. At the place of prayer, the thoughts that troubled the mind were poured out. “Lord, would You give us something from Your word to guide us in our thinking?”

The Bible fell open to Matthew 24. The middle part of verse six, “See that ye be not troubled,”* (Matthew 24:6) was impressed upon our mind and heart. Here Jesus was talking, or rather even commanding, about not being troubled, saying, See that ye be not troubled.” Now war and rumors of wars are troubling. But Jesus has said, See that ye be not even troubled about that! My distress was quite small compared to wars.

Now I had asked the Lord to guide me in thinking about this issue. Here was the answer! How good God is to answer prayer. Now I didn’t have to worry about this any longer. Jesus Himself said to “see that ye be not troubled.” How the Lord wants us to just simply trust Him. How often do we carry problems around and worry about things when Jesus wants to take care of them for us? How much more trust we need! The Lord was faithful, and the risky decision-in-the-making was dropped. Fellow Christians, the Lord is able! I believe we would get more answers to prayer if there were more trust in our hearts.

In Luke 24:38, Jesus asked the believers, “Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts?” Jesus had just appeared while they were talking, after having just vanished earlier in another place. They were terrified and afraid, and supposed they had seen a ghost, as we would put it today. But Jesus said, “Why are ye troubled?” Was there anything to fear? Of course, we can see today that there wasn’t. But it didn’t seem that way to them. Isn’t that the case with many of our fears today? Looking at it from Jesus’ heavenly perspective, these fears are needless.

When the women came to the tomb and found Jesus gone they were perplexed and afraid. The two shining angels were there to speak peace and calmness to them. Note what they said: “He is not here, but is risen: remember how he spake unto you.”* (Luke 24:6) We need to be reminded of God’s continual care and protection. Remember God is caring for you—even in the face of adversity.

Jesus’ own words to us is “Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me.”* (John 14:1) If our hearts are troubled, are we not doubting God and His promises? Paul’s words were, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”* (Romans 8:28) He was convinced and he remembered and this brought great calmness and composure to his soul. Again, we find Paul “saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.”* (Acts 20:23-24)

Is it not pleasant to receive an invitation to dinner? After all the meals a mother makes, it is really special to set down to one you didn’t have to prepare! Did you know there is an invitation to rest and repose in the Word? “And to you who are troubled rest with us.”* (2 Thessalonians 1:7) Are you refusing the invitation and stubbornly cling to your worry and cares? I wonder if this was the case in Paul’s time, as he continues his second letter to the Thessalonians. He is there beseeching or begging them to “be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled, neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter.”* (2 Thessalonians 2:2) In the third verse he goes on to say, “Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed.”* (2 Thessalonians 2:3) Now to see those we love growing cold spiritually, their vision being dimmed by some indulgence, does indeed make us sad. But we are still not to be troubled. Cast it on the Lord. This is too much for us to carry. We can still take their need to God in prayer, but we are not to be troubled.

May the inspired word of God be your portion and give you this wonderful gift of spiritual composure of heart. Who would not want it?

“For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness’ sake, happy are ye; and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always; to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.”* (1 Peter 3:12-15)