Day 11 - For Peace
- 2014 Oct 11
I find it interesting that in John 16:32-33, Jesus is talking to the disciples about His impending crucifixion and in the next breath says that He is telling them these things "that they may have peace". Seems kind of odd don't you think?
And yet, I believe the very key to peace lies in these verses. First, He tells them that they will be scattered and He will be left alone. And yet, not alone. He says the Father is with Him. There's the first important point. For those of us in Christ, God is with us through thick and thin. Rain or shine.
Secondly, He tells them that they will have trouble. It's a done deal. A sure thing. But… He has overcome the world so don't be afraid.
There's an apparent dichotomy here. Trouble exists, on a very large scale in this case, but peace is possible.
I'm not going to lie, I struggle with this. I would love life to be one big Hallmark moment. I have the notion that if God will just tie up all my loose ends and fix all my problems (and the world's problems) I, then, can have peace. But it's the impossible dream. This world is a carousel of difficulty and brokenness. A giant mess. That's the bad news. But in the midst of this bad news there is good news. The good news is for those of us in Christ, we have Him. And in Him we have peace. It's finished. It's not whether you feel it or not. It's a fact.
So how do we access it? I don't want to oversimplify what I believe to be the answer. But I think it boils down to this: we need a right view of God, a right view of ourselves and we also need intimacy with Him before we will experience His peace.
In Luke 6, there is the story of the disciples and Jesus in a boat out on the water. While Jesus is asleep, a bad storm descends upon the lake. The boat starts taking on water and the disciples become terrified. They wake up Jesus in a panic. Jesus speaks to the storm and of course, all is well. Afterward, Jesus questioned them about their faith.
The disciples became frightened of the storm because they didn't understand Who was in the boat with them. Do I?
Father, I am so like the disciples in the boat with Jesus. I see the winds and waves and automatically panic. Forgive my unbelief. Remind me that it is You in the boat with me. Wrap Your arms around me and whisper in my ear that it's You, the Anchor of my soul!
Lord, give me a right view of You. Let me see You like Isaiah did, high and lifted up, with the train of Your robe filling the temple. (Isaiah 6:1) You are holy, Lord, and the whole earth is full of Your glory. You made heaven and earth and You ride the highest heavens which are from ancient times.(Psalm 68:33) Show me Your glory, I pray.
Father, when this world overwhelms me, or when my heart is faint, lead me to the Rock that is higher than I. For You have been a refuge for me, a tower of strength against my enemy. Let me dwell in Your tent forever, let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. (Psalm 61:2-4)
Father, You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is stayed on You because he trust in You. (Isaiah 26:3) Bind up all the broken places in me that prevent me from trusting You. All the self stuff - self reliance, self sufficiency, etc… Lord, gird my mind with thoughts of You and hold my gaze, for I know that peace, true shalom, only resides in You. Show me how to recline on to You and rest in Your peace. In the name of the One who commands the wind and the waves, Jesus, Amen.
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