“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
Thoughts from Amanda Cook
Behind the Scenes
When we think of peace we generally think of the absence of something unpleasant rather than the presence of something good. The absence of noise, the absence of trouble, the absence of loneliness, the absence of strife, the absence of hurt, the absence of rejection. But what if what Jesus was really talking about was the presence of something – something so amazing that He alone can give it to us.
The word peace in our verse today is the Greek word eirene meaning “the tranquil state of the soul assured of its salvation through Christ, fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is.” And ONLY Jesus can give us that kind of peace.
So, the idea of peace, as Jesus uses it, refers to a state of being, a choice really. First to choose Him as our Savior and then to choose to rest in the assurance of our salvation. We already know that we will have trouble in this life. Jesus says so Himself in John 16:33, “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.”
Make it Real
See, we so often look to things to give us peace – money, marriage, children, skinniness, the right job, the right house, the right car, on and on and on…We want these things to transcend all the chaos, hurt, loneliness; so much so that we give them reign in our lives and make them sovereign over us.
And that’s the real crux of the problem; things will never give us peace. Some, like money and cars, are inanimate – no life, no breath, no feelings, no nothing. How on earth can we expect something with no life to give us peace? Some, like marriage and children, rely on fallible people who can never hold up under the heavy weight of expectation that we place on them.
But you might be thinking, “Thanks a lot Colleen. You make it sound so easy, but I don’t FEEL at peace.” If you know me at all, you have probably heard me say, “Feelings are liars.” And I really mean that. We rely so much on what FEELS good that we miss out on the obedience of acting regardless of feelings. We miss out on all the good around us that we do have. We miss out on the perfect gift of grace and the power He has left us with in the Holy Spirit. We have HIS power to act and think apart from our feelings.
Okay, so how do you do that? How do you press forward apart from your feelings? We have the perfect guide in Philippians 4: 6-7, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
- Do NOT be anxious about anything.
- Pray in EVERYTHING
- Be thankful
That’s it. If we align our hearts in prayer and thankfulness, we are guarded in the peace of God. Not because God just magically gives us everything we want, but because He shows us that everything we have is enough in Him.
So today, I ask that you consider where your feelings are leading you astray. What should you be thankful that you have regardless of what you don’t have?
End in Prayer
Thank You that You have given me everything I need. I have Your power living within me. I don’t need to be captive to my feelings. I can act apart from them knowing that You are with me and that You have me. May Your peace guard my heart and my mind. May You give me an attitude of thankfulness. Thank You for giving me another day to breathe in Your glory and shine Your light.