When all is said and done, what we want is peace. No more struggle, no more striving, no more feeling broken, no more hurting, no more doubting, no more anything – we have everything we need and can finally rest. We want to relax and let go and not worry or fear. Peace is everything.
Luckily for Christians, Jesus can actually give us peace that is not dependent upon circumstances or our current status. He doesn’t give as the world does, which is transitory peace. He gives lasting peace in the midst of troubles and despite fear.
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.
Jesus knew that in this world there will always be trouble, disturbances of the peace, unfulfilled longings and desires, and sometimes unmet needs. But He put His Spirit in Christians, and peace is a fruit of the Spirit. It is always available for us to tap into, as long as we are abiding in the vine and connected to His life. So why don’t we access and live in this peace?
“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.”
1 John 5:4
for everyone born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith.
Jesus’s peace can be accessed only by faith. Our simple faith that God is still in control, that God is good, and that His will still will be done in our lives gives us access into that peace. It isn’t an intelligence or a mind thing, like you talk yourself down out of panic mode. No, faith gives us access to ALL the fruit of the Spirit, including peace.
Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Then he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace.”
When we are robbed of our peace, and we seem lost in the world and cannot find our way, when the future seems dark and scary, and we are grasping all around to find something to hold on to that will anchor us, or at least make us feel less afraid for a while, all it takes to break that moment is one true, small statement of faith.
“You are good, God.”
“I believe in You, God.”
“I trust You, God.”
“I know You love me, God.”
It is not magic, and it is not mind control. It is the supernatural effect of faith on a war-torn, embattled soul. When we wander away in doubt, or simply forget to trust in Him, we cut ourselves off from the life-giving flow of God’s Spirit that enables the fruit of the Spirit to blossom in our life.
You don’t have to have all the answers, or find all the solutions to the endless array of problems in your life. You simply need to meet each episode with a small statement of faith, and CLING to it with all your might. Say it over and over again, until you believe it, and use the sword of God’s Word as an offensive as well as a defensive weapon against the enemy’s attack on your faith.
Peace can be had, but it cannot be stored – like manna, that went bad if you didn’t eat it that day (or on the Sabbath). You only get peace in the present, not enough for the future. But His peace is enough for the moment to carry you through.