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Peace… May 4, 2008

Posted by Michelle Knoll in Devotionals.
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What exactly is peace?  Is it just being at rest; i.e., not moving?  Is it the lack of sound?  It is a state of being totally relaxed?  Some people think that peace is these things, or a combination of these things. For instance, people confuse peace with quiet, because they typically occur at the same time.  But you can be in a completely quiet room, and still not be at peace.  Then again, you can be in a crowd of noisy people, and still experience peace within yourself.
 
So what is peace?  Is it a feeling, or a condition?  Is it something you create yourself, or do circumstances dictate whether or not you have it?  Do you inherit peace from your parents?  Or is it something that is given to you by someone else?
 
Jesus talked about peace with His disciples.  He said, “Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives, do I give to you.”  Jesus mentioned peace in two ways: first, He leaves His peace with us, and second, He gives peace to us.
 
Are there two kinds of peace?  Is there a difference between the peace that is left with us, and the peace that is given to us?  I don’t think so.  I think Jesus meant that He deposits His peace within us, and we have it whether or not we can “feel” it.  Then He also wanted us to know that it is a gift; it’s not something we earn or deserve, but He gives it to us freely, just like all His other gifts.  And it’s ours forever, once He gives it to us.  Now it’s up to us to use it.
 
The Bible states that a person is kept in “perfect peace” when they keep their minds on the Lord. It also states in Psalm 29 that He will “bless His people with peace.” The book of Philippians says that we are to be “anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God, and the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
 
So when we pray to the Lord about all those things that are on our minds, while maintaining a thankful heart, He blesses us with His peace.
 
Jesus said that He gave us peace “not as the world gives…”  So how does the world give us peace?  By telling us that if we lose weight, and wear the right clothes, we’ll be okay.  The world tries to give us peace by telling us that if we put enough money into our retirement fund, then we’ll be okay.  The world tells us that if we have the right car, the right house, the right college for our kids, the right kind of vacation, direct deposit for our paychecks, direct withdrawal for all of our bills, the best internet connection, the most channels on our HDTV… if we have everything we could possibly want… then we’ll be okay.  And then we can rest, knowing that we’ve taken care of everything, and we can be at peace.
 
But what happens to all that, when there’s an earthquake that destroys half of Wall Street?  Or a tornado that takes our house?  Or a terrorist that bombs our local mall?  Or a crazed gunman that shoots up our kid’s college?  What then?
 
My peace I leave with you
 
The world’s peace doesn’t last, because it’s built on temporary things.  God’s peace lasts, because it’s built on Him.  And HE never fails.
 
So what is peace?  It’s a knowing…  a knowing that everything will be okay, as long as we’re trusting and obeying our Father in Heaven, whose Name is Holy.
 
But the Dow Jones has dropped 1,000 points!
~I have His peace.  It’ll be okay.
 
But the company I’ve been employed by for the last 20 years is closing!  I’m going to be jobless!
~Jesus has given me His peace.  I don’t know tomorrow, but I know Him.  It’ll be okay.
 
But my spouse has just been diagnosed with a life-threatening disease!
~Jesus said He would never leave me nor forsake me.  I know my spouse knows Jesus, so we’ll walk this out together.  It’ll be okay.
 
It will be okay. 
 
It will be okay.
 
This is why the Bible exhorts us to “seek peace and pursue it.”  God doesn’t want us relying on the world for something that only He can give: His Peace.  It’s something we can’t live without.
 
If you have found yourself becoming anxious about what’s happening in the world or in your own life, and you aren’t experiencing God’s Peace, then do the following:
 
Stop.
 
Stop what you’re doing, and decide that having His Peace is more important than anything else you’re dealing with.  Go to the Lord, and talk with Him.  Not to Him, but with Him.  Read His Word, the Bible, and make a list of all the things that you read that speak directly to you and your situation.  Then make a list of all the things you can be thankful for, right now, even with your situation the way it is. Then focus on the fact that no matter what is going on, God is with you, He loves you, He’s in control, and even though right now it may not seem like it, it will be okay.
 
Today’s Cookie : 

“The Lord God is my helper; The Lord is the sustainer of my soul.” Psalm 54:4

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Comments»

1. Lin - May 9, 2008

I like your Milk and Cookies format and the devotional itself was excellent, thoughtful and well written. The only thing I would suggest is to see if you can find a graphic or photo of a glass of milk and a chocolate chip cookie (with a bite out of it maybe) as graphic anchors for the Biblical quotes. It would liven up the page.

2. thecookielady - May 10, 2008

Thanks, Lin! I appreciate your comments.

I’ll be working on the layout of the site some more, so I’ll try to remember to add that in.

3. syinly - May 14, 2008

I really like this post. Just could reference where the two verses about peace come from. I know they are in the bible I have read them before. You made me think. Thank you

4. thecookielady - May 14, 2008

Thanks for your comment, syinly.

The verses I used were: Psalm 29:11, Psalm 34:14, Isaiah 26:3, John 14:27, and Philippians 4:6-7. I think that’s all of the ones I used! Though there are many more.

Thanks for stopping by and reading. God bless you!


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