The Peace of Jesus
Peace. World peace. We’ve turned it into a buzzword, haven’t we? Until two years ago, I thought peace was a pipedream. It sounded great on paper, but I was sure I had never truly experienced the peace the Bible talks about. The peace that Jesus experienced as He slept like a baby in the stern of the ship as hurricane force winds whipped around him and everyone else on board lost their ever-loving minds trying to weather the storm; the peace that rebels against all circumstances that threaten to rip us clear out of our foundation like a fallen tree after a tornado. I didn’t know it really existed. To be able to stand firm and immoveable in the midst of an all-out war seemed absolutely impossible.
In the fall of 2015 I ran across a verse in Isaiah 26 that challenged everything I had ever believed about peace. “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.” I set it as my Facebook wall-paper and forgot about it, if I’m being totally honest. Through a string of circumstances, the Lord brought that verse back into my life time and time again and I never could have imagined how much I would need it in the year to come.
Throughout this last year I have lost a job, gotten a better job only to be a part of a thirty-person layoff three months later, was subsequently jobless for 6 months, lost a dog of 15 years, and someone very close to me attempted suicide three weeks ago. It has been the single hardest year of my life, and I’ve seen the Lord more clearly and gotten to know Him more dearly at the same time. If we never had to the weather the storm, how would we ever know the power of His presence and His peace?
“Perfect peace,” … what did it mean? As I prayed about this perfect peace and asked God to help me understand the perfect love that He says casts out fear, He began to reveal to me that the perfection of His love is best realized in the fact that He recognizes our sin, calls it what it is, and yet chooses to love us endlessly and to never leave us. When our sin overtakes us, He’s there to point us toward His truth and empower us to make the right decision. Knowing that we are protected from punishment allows us to live freely inside of His love and to be brave as we trust His heart for us. So, if ‘perfect love’ was all encompassing, ‘perfect peace’ must be as well. Perfect peace acknowledges the storm, yet holds fast in the truth that victory belongs to the Lord just as much as we do. His power and peace reside in His spirit and He has the power to hold us and cover us as the storm rages around us.
We have the choice to either partner with fear or partner with the Lord and receive His perfect peace in every situation. It takes trust to partner with the Lord, and He loves to show us how trustworthy He truly is. In His word, we find out the true aspects and power of who He is. Get to know His word, and you’ll get to know Him better. Knowing your Father will help you to trust Him and rest in Him as the war rages around you. Anxiety, fear, and thinking you have to ‘fix it’ ALL bow to the great name of Jesus. He wants to teach you about His perfect peace, but more than anything else He wants you to get to know Him and His love for you.
Dearly beloved, open up & let the light in.