Being At Peace
“Now the Lord of peace himself give you peace always by all means. The Lord [be] with you all.” II Thessalonians 3:16
Peace. I believe we all wish it and we all seek it.
In this world, however, there are so many circumstances and people who if we allow, will rob us of that peace.
But that’s the thing.
One of the things I learned early as a Christian is to not give over my ‘power’ to someone else or to circumstances.
That means, no one or nothing should be able to provoke you to think, act or feel something that removes you from your peace with God.
What does Peace with God actually mean?
First of all, we have to come to an agreement or an understanding. Are we speaking the same language? To be at peace with God is to know Him and to have a relationship with Him. The ONLY way to have a relationship with God is through Jesus Christ.
“For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus;” I Timothy 2:5
There is only one way provided to all mankind to have access to God and to be able to spend eternity with Him – that is through Jesus Christ.
So, the first thing you need to answer, ‘to you, who is Jesus?’
“Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Acts 4:12
The only requirement is to believe.
“And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house. And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.” Acts 16:30-33
Once you’ve accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior you are now in the Family of God. With this comes the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. And it is through Him that we learn, grow, and take on the characteristics of God. Through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we can have peace.
“Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” John 16:7
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
I do not believe the manner in which the fruits of the Spirit are listed is by chance. I believe once we accept Jesus Christ as our Savior the first thing we experience and wish to express is love. Love for our God, for Jesus and for others. Jesus even said that the greatest of these is love.
From our love comes joy. When we think upon how wonderful it is to be loved by God and to what extent He went to have a relationship with us – we have unspeakable joy. This joy can carry us through any situation.
Then, there’s peace. Peace comes through the knowledge of who we are now in Christ; through our growth in the Holy Spirit and through our life experiences.
It’s like exercising a muscle. The more we use it the stronger it gets. The more we exercise our faith we strengthen our love and increase our joy which ultimately leads to peace.
This peace is one that passes all understanding.
“And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7
We know through God’s word that all things work out for good. Even though the all things in this world are definitely not good. It’s difficult to get away from all of the ‘news’ of this world. We hear about tragedy and despicable acts almost as soon as they happen. And with today’s 24-hour news cycles we hear about it over and over.
If we allow ourselves to be overly consumed by the events of this world, we can lose our focus and become anxious.
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; 7 and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
The key here is to focus. If we focus more on what we hear and spend less time in God’s word, our equilibrium Spiritually will be off track. It is very important that we realize daily our need to spend time with God and to allow the Holy Spirit to work through us.
We must step aside from life’s situations and see.
We must be able to identify and to understand that these things going on around us are beyond our control. These things, for the most part, have little effect on us. If there’s something we can do to improve a bad situation near us – we should try. If not, we can pray and ask God for wisdom and to pray for those involved in the situation.
“And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.” Colossians 3:15
Difficult times will come to all of us. The only way we can be prepared and be at peace is to exercise our knowledge of and relationship with God – through the Holy Spirit.
We also need to be aware of our thoughts and feelings. If we recognize that life’s situations are making us sad, anxious or even confused. That’s when we need to acknowledge it and surrender the situation to God.
I do sincerely believe that when we allow God to work His character through us – love, joy, and peace are not only fruits of the Spirit but also part of God’s character. When we allow that to work through us – we then can be used by God to help and to encourage others.
The most important things in life now as a Christian is to honor God with our lives and to help others.
“Others, LORD, yes others. Let this my motto be. Help me to live for others. That I might live like Thee.”
The love of God working in us brings a joy that ultimately results in peace. We can live there. I truly believe this. Be encouraged…and then encourage someone else. Most of all – be at peace knowing God is in control and incredibly loves us all.