“state of tranquility or serenity, cessation or freedom from strife and dissension”
Sounds wonderful, doesn’t it?
But are we ever truly at peace?
Oh, how I want to be. But it’s so easy for circumstances and people to steal my peace. Some days their actions, or lack thereof, make me grumble and complain. Other days their words cause me to scowl and roll my eyes. And sometimes I completely lose it.
Notice my word choice: “they make me.” I blame my husband, my sassy teenager, the irritating people on the highway, the rude clerk at the store, the demanding boss for stealing my peace. It feels better that way. Justified.
Yet after the looks flash across my face or the words spew forth from my lips, I hate it! I wished I hadn’t. I want to stop, to be kind, to be patient. But I can’t. I just can’t. Something in me just can’t stop myself! My heart cries, What is wrong with me??
Can you identify?
My comfort comes; my hope for peace returns when I read Paul’s words in Romans 7:15,
Listen, I can’t explain my actions. Here’s why: I am not able to do the things I want; and at the same time, I do the things I despise. (NIV)
Wow! Even Paul felt this way. The greatest evangelist that ever lived struggled with walking fully in God’s peace. He got angry. He lost his temper. People irritated him.
It’s called sin!
It’s our natural bent. Without Jesus we would live this way every day, every hour, every minute.
To overcome that natural bent, we must feed our spirit.
We forget that as saved children of God, we have two natures. Physical AND spiritual.
Without Jesus, we walk in the physical. We respond in the physical. We allow our sin nature to lead us.
When I lose my patience easily; when my tongue lets loose quickly, when I feel devoid of peace, it’s because I am allowing my physical self to control my thoughts, emotions and speech. And looking back, it’s those times that I’m not sitting at the feet of my Father … really spending time reading and absorbing His Word. Consequently, my peace dissipates, and I end up angry. Restless. Impatient. Intolerant.
Jesus, our Great Shepherd, did not live a divided life. His physical and spirit united as one. And His Spirit controlled His physical. He allowed it to lead in all He said and did. He offered His total life to His Father. Scripture tells us
I have come down from heaven not to pursue My own agenda but to do what He desires. I am here on behalf of the Father who sent Me. John 6:38 (The Voice)
Jesus did His Father’s will … always.
Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 10:31
Whatever you do—whether you eat or drink or not—do it all to the glory of God! (The Voice)
Jesus desired to glorify God in everything He said and did. And so should we. Really, every act of our lives should reflect His peace, His love, and His character.
Friend, let’s pray together with one heart to unite our natural self with our spiritual self so that God’s peace and His presence will permeate our every word and deed.
Not perfectly. But consistently.
So when we lose it, and we will, our hearts are more prepared and open to repenting and asking forgiveness, thereby modeling again our Father’s character.
We must PRACTICE living a life of peace.
We must invite God into our every day. It’s when we include Him in our daily activities that peace will permeate our hearts and homes.
IN CHRIST WE CAN DO THIS!! Not in our own strength, but in the strength of the Holy Spirit.
Do you have days like mine? Times where you can’t explain the lack of peace? Share them with us today and share how you find your peace again. It helps to know we are not alone!!
Sweet Blessings to you today!