Experiencing Peace in Troubled Times
by Margaret Silvester
The good news we all want to hear is not forthcoming just now. The daily news centres on a virus which is threatening our way of life in every respect. There’s nothing we can do about it. We are in a crisis which has affected us all in one way or another; for some the consequences have been overwhelming. Fear has become a dominant emotion which robs us of peace.
Our text for today is both a command and promise. We are commanded not to be anxious and to bring our prayers to God with thanksgiving. The promise is that a peace which is beyond human understanding will fill our hearts and minds. This means that our emotions and our minds will be at peace. It’s a peace that the world cannot know or take away, because it’s a supernatural peace which springs from an intimate relationship with God.
Step one on the road to peace is being at peace with God (Romans 5:1). The moment we come to the cross in faith with repentant hearts, we receive forgiveness and acceptance because of what Jesus did on the cross. Peace with God is immediately planted in our hearts and we have a new beginning. It is enabling peace which gives us grace to be at peace with ourselves and with others.
Peace is a parting gift from Jesus. A few days before the cross, He promised His disciples, ‘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’ (John 14:27) The peace of Jesus is greater than our circumstances. It stands the test of time and remains undisturbed through joy and sorrow. Jesus is the Prince of Peace. He came to save, heal and restore our broken lives. He warned, ‘in this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world (John 16:33).
However difficult life may be, we are called to have an eternal perspective. Jesus is coming again. Now is the time to be Kingdom people with our eyes and our mind fixed on Jesus, watching and waiting for His return. Peter writes, ‘So then, dear friends, since you are looking forward to this, make every effort to be found spotless, blameless and at peace with him’ (2 Peter 3:14). I would like to add the words, ‘and with one another’.
Prayer: Father, thank You for sending Jesus, the Prince of Peace, and the true source of peace. By Your Spirit, please develop in me faith which trusts in You in every circumstance of life to work for my good and for Your glory. Give me an eternal perspective of Your kingdom. I pray, ‘Your kingdom come, your will be done’ in my life, and through my life, as I wait for Jesus to return. I bring my prayer in His name. Amen.
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