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Day 10

Day 10

Author: Rachel Hands
June 19, 2020

 

Peace.

Overnight a microscopic germ upended our world, confining us to our homes, threatening our health and lives, our livelihoods, and our children’s educations.  With this backdrop of fear and loss, we then witnessed the tragic murder of George Floyd, reminding us of our societal shortcomings and the divisiveness of our citizens.  Perfect storm of uncertainty and loss of control.  But did we lose control?

We as humans are exceptionally fragile.  We have great difficulty controlling our own actions let alone external factors in our lives.  We have not lost control through these recent events – we’ve merely been made painfully aware of the fact that we never had much control.  But is this bad news?

We have a choice in who we follow.  We have an eternal God who has perfect knowledge, absolute power and loves us beyond what we can even imagine.  We on the other hand, can’t see 10 seconds into the future, have limited understanding and, even under the best of circumstances, a relatively short lifespan.  The right choice is obvious – but only when we become aware of our limitations.  God speaks clearly to us through adversity - if we’re willing to listen.

All people want happiness and peace.  The loud, relentless message of this world is that these come from material wealth, physical health and human relationships.  However, Jesus tells us the treasures of this world are temporary.  Does that mean peace and joy for Christians is deferred until we reach Heaven?  No.  God wants an abundant life for us – including peace that passes understanding - right now.  In the book The Fruitful Life, Jerry Bridges shares that often peace is elusive for Christians because we don’t actually pray for peace but rather for deliverance from our trouble.  Think about that, deliverance is the opposite of supernatural peace.  If all is going well and we’re not feeling peaceful it doesn’t make sense.  The problem with this, is that peace that depends on our immediate circumstances is as temporary as are those circumstances.  We all will have trouble in this world – anyone who doesn’t believe that really isn’t giving it much thought. 

So how do we achieve this promised peace?  The Scripture passage I’ve been drawn to during this time offers straightforward instruction:

Let your gentleness be known to all men. The Lord is at hand.  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 understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. Philippians 4:5-8

 

  1. Be gentle with all people.The Lord is standing right next to us – and the battle belongs to Him.
  2. Bring our troubles to God in prayer and know that He has promised that He has a perfect plan for our life (Jer. 29:11), even though we lack the broad vision to see its entirety.
  3. Exercise thankfulness in our daily prayers.A key factor in achieving faith and peace is remembering God’s past blessings and deliverance.
  4. Choose to focus on good and beautiful things, including truth and justice.Submission to God is neither silence nor inaction in the face of wrongdoing and injustice.God commands us to speak truth and care for society’s most vulnerable (Isa. 1:17) – to love others as we do ourselves (Matt. 22:39).

True and lasting treasure for us – right now – is peace despite adverse circumstances, and this is God’s clear promise.  While we personally benefit greatly from this peace, it also provides a tremendous testimony to others.  All people want peace – witnessing someone who has it, in the midst of difficulty, is powerful indeed. 

Prayer

 

Father God, Thank You that I’m your well-loved child and You know the plans You have for me, plans to prosper and not harm me, to give me hope and a future.  Please help me to always remember this and grant me Your peace.  In Jesus name, Amen.

 

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.   John 16:33

 

Rachel Hands


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