PEACE. Where does it come from? Is it a state of being or a being itself?
I have only found one sustaining answer to these questions.
I've experienced peace in it's several forms - at the side of a lake, in a breathtaking sunset, rocking a baby to sleep, sleeping... But what happens when I wake up, or the baby cries or the sun sets?
I've also known the presence of peace in the most awful times in ways that are beyond explanation, defying the circumstances surrounding it. But where does peace come from?
Peace comes from knowing that my feet are on a solid floor and that my destiny is not flippant.
Peace is the calm under the the top side of a lake that is being battered in a storm, or the warm fire in a house while a storm is wrecking everything outside.
Peace is knowing that I am being held up by someone bigger, wiser and stronger than myself, when I feel like all hell is crashing down.
Peace is surety that isn't always felt. It's a trust. A knowing that we are somehow being taken care of by someone who is larger, yet more present in the details then we could ever be; someone who is greater than the sum of all trouble.
My only answer to this question is outside of myself. I have experienced and continue to know true peace regardless of what is swirling inside or around me. From the most minute disturbance to the deepest cut, peace has come to me when I have asked. Yes, peace has a name and this name could sleep in the middle of a storm.
God is peace. He is stable footing in any situation. He is there in the small, irritating times and in the 'monstrous, I feel like I'm suffocating and can't go on' times. He is here by his spirit, through his son, Jesus. Yes, this is why Jesus came so many years ago to live on earth...
He is peace. He is here for us. All we have to do is ask.
"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.
In this world you will have trouble.
But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
(John 16:33, NIV)
As I was reading my Bible one morning I was constantly having to refocus. My mind was not listening and instead was in full throttle worry over things that I knew I should not be concerning myself with. That's when I stopped and said (out-loud)... My mind is my worst enemy!
It dwells on things it shouldn't. It fast forwards and then rewinds. It seems to have its own will.
And then I heard Paul saying (not out-loud :), "O wretched person that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death?"
But wait, he then says...
"So then, with my mind I myself serve the law of God... (Romans 7:24,25)
For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit." (Romans 7:25; 8:5)
With my mind? When I am muddling over things that have already taken place, I am concerning myself with what I have no power over. When I am rehearsing the future, I am concerning myself with things that do not belong to me. I am serving my appetites, desires and fears -- not God. When my mind is serving the Spirit of God it is not strategizing on how to fix someone or something else that was not given to me to fix. It is alert and at rest and becomes an asset for God's kingdom, full of the thoughts and ways of Christ. It sees clearly, discerns rightly, listens well, responds obediently, and sleeps well at night. It loves and believes the impossible. It believes the best and is ready for God's direction & wisdom.
Does this resonate with you? Has your mind gone off track?
If so, why don't you pray what I did:
Forgive me, Lord for forgetting.
Forgive me for taking ownership - for taking Your spot.
I set my mind on You and Your ways.
I set my mind on the things of the Spirit.
Have a peaceful & effective day!
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you.
Maybe I've been looking at this the wrong way.
Is obedience simply something that is required? Is it a chore? How do I do it with joy... with absolute trust?
I've been asking these questions a lot lately. I want to be obedient; in fact, I think that I am for the most part. But, I want to find how to be 'peacefully' obedient. I have come to realize that I can only do this by putting my full trust in the One that I am obeying.
I've been reading in Exodus and in just one sitting I read the following:
Aside from the incredible privilege of seeing that (yeah, yeah; I'm that old! :), I think that the next great reward of obedience comes in the form of 'peace'. What a treasure (& relief) peace is; for when I am not struggling against God well, I am not struggling!
Take time to ponder this today. Obedience to a gracious, kind and merciful God is His way of rewarding us. What a good God we serve.
Ever wonder why Pharaoh told Moses to wait until tomorrow?
Look at what it says:
Moses said to Pharaoh, "I leave to you the honor of setting the time for me to pray ... to be rid of the frogs...
"Tomorrow," Pharaoh said.
What?! Apparently, the frogs were everywhere; in their beds, their kitchens, their hair... Well, God did say that they would go up on them :) Why would he be so ridiculous? Why wouldn't he have said, "Right now"?
Anyway, this word 'tomorrow' has been intriguing me lately. Maybe it's just me, but I find that I am either putting off what I should do today or thinking (worrying) too much about tomorrow. Sounding familiar anyone out there??
The thought occurred to me that maybe if I really learned how to do today, I'd be right where I am supposed to be... tomorrow.
Find peace today, my friend. Trust God with tomorrow. It'll be a today soon enough...
Here it is in full:
Moses said to Pharaoh, "I leave to you the honor of setting the time for me to pray for you and your officials and your people that you and your houses may be rid of the frogs, except for those that remain in the Nile." 10 "Tomorrow,"Pharaoh said.
Moses replied, "It will be as you say, so that you may know there is no one like the LORD our God. 11 The frogs will leave you and your houses, your officials and your people; they will remain only in the Nile."
Please inquire for the word of the LORD today. 1 Kings 22:5