"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
From the very mouth of Jesus we find reassurance that whatever happens in this world, we can still dwell in the peace of God. You may wonder how that's possible when evil seems to take the victory. Or when you wake up each day living in circumstances that feel oppressive, overwhelming, or frustrating. Or when you have no sense of the purpose and significance of your life. You feel unsettled, restless, and far from peace. I understand how common these thoughts are.
The thing about peace, though, is that it doesn't come as a result of your circumstances, but rather peace is a gift from God that we can savor regardless of what's going on in our lives and the world around us.
Peace endures for the long haul. When the journey is unknown, when you've gotten the bad news, or when the fight seems lost... peace is still available to those who have put their hope in Jesus. I have been through countless battles in my life, had to overcome plenty of obstacles, and lived through massive disappointments, but when my trust has been in God, I truly could feel peace through it all. In fact, peace is the answer to my hardest problems, and peace is the answer to how I want to live my life each day.
Instead of wondering what it would be like to have peace in your heart and mind, let Jesus reside in your heart and you'll begin to experience exactly what it feels like to have peace in every storm, peace about who you are, and peace about the right steps to take. When we live like Jesus, we become the peacemakers He has called us to be. God wants us to bear this fruit of the spirit by bringing peace wherever we go.
But, what does it look like to bear the fruit of peace?
Peace looks like speaking the truth. Peace is putting the other before yourself. Peace is spending time with God each day. Peace is being honest and loving. Peace is helping someone rather than walking away. Peace is mending a broken relationship. Peace is denying your flesh. Peace is pursuing righteous living. Peace is breaking the cycle of anger, anxiety, and hopelessness. Peace it walking away from a situation God doesn't want you in. Peace is laying your cares at the feet of Jesus. Peace is letting go of the illusion that you're in control and trusting God to take care of things. Real peace is attainable and is a gift we all get to enjoy.
Consider ways that you can pursue peace and make peace in your life. What needs to change? How can you put God first? How can you calm your mind down and allow peace to enter in?
Let us pray
Lord, you are the God of peace. The prince of peace. You have given us a peace that surpasses all understanding. Just as you calmed the storm and saved the disciples, calm the storms in our lives and bring about real and lasting peace. Let us bear the fruit of peace wherever we go, whoever we're with, and in what we say and do. Let peace be part of our character, let peace absorb into our hearts and minds, and help us to let go and trust you, so that real peace can take root in our lives. Thank you for peace in a world that seems so out of control. Thank you that we can trust you and dwell in peace in each and every circumstance. Amen.
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