“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”
– John 16:33 NKJV
Nearing the end of His life, Jesus began preparing His followers for the life changing challenges they would face. In the midst of describing His death and their persecution, He reassured them of His peace that would soon be their peace.
In each of our journeys, we face chaos, confusion and conflicts. The storms of life produce struggles that can lead to shipwreck. Opposition and obstacles can be overwhelming.
With certain confidence, Jesus knew peace was found in His promises, in His power and in His presence. The prophet Isiah reminds us, “For a child is born to us, a Son is given to us. The government will rest on His shoulders. And He will be called: Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. His government and its peace will never end . . .” (Is 9:6-7 NLT)
Peace With God. Here’s a great verse, “Since we have been made right in God’s sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.” (Rom 5:1 NLT) Separation from God because of sin is no more. The Christ paid a price of redemption and reconciled our relationship with the Creator. Paul wrote to the followers in Ephesus, “Christ brought us together through His death on the cross. The Cross got us to embrace, and that was the end of the hostility. Christ came and preached peace to you outsiders and peace to us insiders. He treated us as equals, and so made us equals. Through Him we both share the same Spirit and have equal access to the Father.” (Eph 2:16-18 MSG).
Peace With Others. Acceptance from God . . . Acceptance of others. Paul closed his letter to those in Corinth with these encouraging words, “Be joyful. Grow to maturity. Encourage each other. Live in harmony and peace. Then the God of love and peace will be with you.” (2 Cor 13:11 NLT). Walking in harmony is better than running in hostility . . . Wisdom over warring. James reminds us, “Wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.” (Jam 3:17-18 NLT)
Peace With Ourselves. This is the tough one. Often our personal conflicts keep us from our own personal calm. We may no longer cause hurt in others but we can’t heal ourselves. We may experience forgiveness from God, express forgiveness to others and never enjoy forgiveness in our own hearts. Paul reminds us of a life-changing truth, “So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus.” (Rom 8:1 NLT) God no longer sees our sin. It’s forgiven and forgotten. We learn from it but we don’t live in it.
Oswald Chambers reflects on experiencing peace from God and peace with God, “I have to get to the point of the absolute and unquestionable relationship that takes everything exactly as it comes from Him. God never guides us at some time in the future, but always here and now. Realize that the Lord is here now, and the peace you receive is immediate.”
His peace surpasses all of our understanding. Find Him . . . Find His peace.