How Jesus Gives Us Peace
A lot of things could easily steal our peace in this day and age, but it doesn’t have to be that way. One of the wonderful promises of God is that Jesus gives us peace. He says in John 14:27: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.”
How Does Peace Work?
My favorite description of this peace God promises us is found in Philippians 4:7: “And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” I can honestly say I’ve experienced that kind of peace. It would probably seem strange to the world, but it has been in the biggest struggles of my life that I discovered the most wonderful quiet inside my soul. In the midst of painful loss, it was as though heaven itself came down and wrapped me in a warm blanket of God’s love and compassion. I always credit the prayers of others for those experiences. But this morning I realized it may have been prayers plus something else.
Prerequisites to Peace?
In the few verses preceding Philippians 4:7, there are actions to take that bring about the experience of peace that is so great, we can’t comprehend it. Those actions, per verses 4-6, are:
- Rejoice in the Lord always;
- Again, rejoice;
- Let your gentleness be known to everyone;
- (Because the Lord is at hand) Do not be anxious about anything;
- Let your requests be made known to God by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving.
We have been empowered to have peace, and it seems to me it comes through faith. How will we rejoice always, meaning also in difficult times, unless we have faith that God rewards those who diligently seek Him and will work things together for our good (Romans 8:28)? Isn’t “rejoice always” an extraordinary statement? God instructs us to remain in a state of rejoicing throughout this thing called life.
It can be done! I’m one of those people who grew up without knowledge of God, and I was aware of a desperate need for something—turned out to be God. I’ve lived a life of faith since the night Jesus became my Lord and Savior, and, as a result, I have maintained daily joy, no matter what terrible things have been happening. Life should not have been easy, some of the nightmares I’ve been through, but God gave me ease, peace, and power to have a rejoicing heart through it all. Currently, all hardships seem fully behind me, and life is a daily treasure, filled with loving family. I know more difficult times will come, but my peace will remain intact.
A Peace Parable
The way I always think of peace is like how Jesus was in a boat in a terrible storm, but he was sleeping soundly. The disciples woke him up, to inform him that they were on the verge of dying because of the violent nature of the storm. Jesus woke up and first rebuked the disciples for their lack of faith. Then he spoke to the storm, rebuking both the wind and waves. Immediately, all became perfectly calm.
Jesus empowers us, as born-again believers, to speak to the chaos that rocks our lives and experience perfect peace. The world could sure use this peace we have. Maybe they will find it, too, as they see what Jesus accomplishes through us.