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We hope you’re finding the peace of Christ increasing in your heart and life as we continue our sermon series, Seek Peace and Pursue It.  It is important for us to be intentional about seeking peace during times of turmoil and stress.  The sermon title this week is a singular word that we want to hear, Encouraging.  We have had plenty of things to discourage us and it’s easy to sense the darkness of despair coming upon our minds and spirits.  Paul, in Philippians 4:4-13, is writing from the darkness of a prison cell, but he is sharing an incredibly encouraging light of hope.  He is responding to the Philippian church, who has sent him a gift and he is so thankful.  In the process of expressing his gratitude, he tells them the source of the light of hope and peace.  God wants to encourage you today!  As you read Philippians 4:4-13, may your heart be lifted into a surpassing peace by God’s grace and love.  Philippians 4:4-13: Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! 5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. 8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable– if anything is excellent or praiseworthy– think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me– put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. 10 I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. 11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 12 I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength. (NIV)