Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. – John 14:27
What comes to your mind when you hear the word, “Peace”? Is it the desire for a quiet, restful afternoon free of worry? Is it a memory of rare harmony or unity between your children or siblings? I’m guessing it often has to do with external circumstances.
The world tries to offer peace through things like therapy, self-care, extra rest, peace treaties, and compromises. These aren’t bad things, and they can provide temporary rest for our bodies and minds. But, we can’t always be on a vacation at the spa or tucked away reading by the fire. Life is full of conflict and chaos that is beyond our control. There are difficult tasks that can’t be avoided and difficult relationships to navigate that we shouldn’t try to escape from. To what, then, do you look to bring rest to your mind, soul, and spirit in the middle of the chaos of life?
Jesus promises and gives true peace to the believer. He died to secure our peace with God, and He has given the Comforter to indwell us and remind us of His promises. For this reason, our hearts don’t have to be afraid. Why?
- Our sins have been forgiven in full, past, present, and future. We are not living under His condemnation awaiting His judgment
- We have God’s Holy Spirit indwelling us who promises to give wisdom, guidance, comfort, discernment, and grace whenever we are in need.
- We have the assurance that God is using every circumstance in our lives for our good to make us like Jesus Christ.
- We have hope that we will enjoy eternity free from all sin and conflict with our Savior.
- We know that God desires all to come to repentance and has privileged us with the task of spreading that good news. He empowers us to give His news and live peaceably with others, but we are not burdened to fulfill what God alone has promised to do.
Just like joy, peace is a fruit of the Spirit. It is something that God works in us, and not simply a feeling we can attempt to work up within ourselves. That’s why simply changing external circumstances doesn’t bring us lasting peace. Because this is a fruit that is borne in us, it also means that God actually uses chaotic and frustrating circumstances to bring it about. Just as longsuffering is only tested and proved when you are forced to “suffer long” with someone, peace can only be tested and proved in the middle of conflict.
Jesus freely offers peace, but there is a command to obey in order to enjoy that peace. We can choose to allow fears and lies to control our thinking, and proudly attempt to live life in our own strength distancing ourselves from God’s grace. Or, we can humble ourselves before God and accept His grace, trusting His Word. As with all spiritual issues of life, the battle begins first in the mind.
You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock. – Isaiah 26:3
For though we walk in the flesh, we are not waging war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but have divine power to destroy strongholds. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ. – 2 Corinthians 10:3-5
What sweet peace we can enjoy when we are resting in His truth, promises, power, and plan!
PRAISE: Give God glory for giving you peace with Him through Jesus Christ.
THANKSGIVING: Thank God for His Word that transforms your mind and comforts your heart with His peace and steadfast love.
CONFESSION: Ask God to reveal any thoughts that are exalting themselves in opposition to the knowledge of Jesus Christ, your Prince of Peace. Ask God to help you to trust His promises and res in the peace that He alone provides.
FURTHER STUDY: Breathe in the truth of God’s Word concerning God’s peace. Then, breathe out your response to Him in prayer based on what His Holy Spirit reveals.
Philippians 4:4-9; Colossians 3:15; Isaiah 9:6; 2 Thessalonians 3:16; Psalm 29:11
Find the full 30 Days of Thanksgiving social media pack along with other printable devotional and Scripture memory resources at Etsy.com/shop/breathinggrace.
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