Recently my son and I had a special day together. He took time off work to come and spend the day fishing with me. We both like coarse fishing (that’s the sort where you catch freshwater fish and then return them to the water, rather than take them away to eat!) and we went to a very unspoilt lake near me, where we could relax, chat together and hopefully catch something.
The day was glorious with hot sun and no wind. The place was beautiful with a lot of interesting wild life around for us to see, including a bright blue and orange kingfisher flying backwards and forwards over the water. At one stage we just sat in the tranquillity and enjoyed the peace. My son remarked several times how peaceful it was, such a blessing. Of course peace was relative, as there were the usual sounds of farm machinery, small aircraft, and bird noises that you get when you’re in the countryside, but especially for him it was significantly peaceful, as he lives and works in and around London.
It made me reflect on Jesus’ words in John 14:27; ‘peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives’. For us the term peace usually means an absence of sound. This can’t really be achieved in normal life, as there’s always something there to break the silence. In fact most people couldn’t cope with no sound at all for very long, as we need sounds to help us survive. Those who’re profoundly deaf struggle with more than just the lack of noise. Many people search for peace as a place of tranquillity, but something always breaks the silence.
The peace that Jesus refers to is a relational peace with God. Our human spirit longs for that sense of peace with God, and when we become believers we rejoice in the relationship restored so we are no longer in the place of inner turmoil. However, the effects of our past experiences and the constant battle from the enemy all around us can damage our sense of peace within. As God brings inner healing into our spirit and soul so our bodies can begin to relax and be at rest.
No matter how tranquil the surroundings, it’s only the inner peace from Jesus that can really bless us deeply and refresh the spirit.
Oh yes, and we did catch some nice fish that day, which was a real bonus.
Prayer: Jesus thank You for giving us Your peace through the restoration of our relationship with the Father, which You achieved for us on the cross. In the midst of a noisy world help us to find the space to be still, to reflect in the tranquillity and to know that inner peace to quieten our hearts. Amen.
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