Peace. It’s something we long for but something that can be fleeting and elusive. The dictionary defines peace as freedom from such things as civil disturbance or disquieting and oppressive thoughts or emotions. It is defined as an agreement to put an end to hostilities between nations, or harmony in personal relations. Peace is all of these things. But, as I said before, although it is something we strive for, or long for, it is something that, from a worldly perspective, is hard to hold onto. A look at the number of wars and hostilities throughout history, a look at the hatred and the violence that seems unending throughout the world, and even a look at the divorce rate will confirm that peace is hard to come by and harder to hold on to. But there is a peace that we all can experience, a peace that we can easily find and count on, a peace that we can hold on to because it’s a peace that we can be sure of. Where can we find that peace? I’m glad you asked!
The peace that I am referring to is the peace of God. It is a peace that goes beyond worldly peace. It’s a peace that is beyond our human abilities to produce. But it is a peace that we can attain, a peace we can experience. How do we find that peace? In his letter to the church in Philippi, the apostle Paul wrote, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.” To experience the peace of God, we only need to ask Him for it. We need to pray, telling God what we need, what will move us from worry to peace, and then thank Him for it. When we do, we will experience that peace that exceeds our own understanding, a peace that carries us through trials and through difficulties. It’s that easy to experience the peace of God. But here’s what it requires from you: TRUST!
Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you!” To be able to put aside our worrying about anything and instead pray about everything requires that we place our full and complete trust in the One to Whom we are praying. When we keep our minds fixed on God and place our trust in Him, we are promised perfect peace. The Hebrew word for “peace” here is shalom and it means more that the end to war or hostilities, it means more than just freedom from oppressive thoughts or emotions. It means more than just relationships that are in harmony. This word includes blessings such as wholeness, health, and completeness. It means a peace that goes far beyond our understanding, a peace that the world cannot offer but God can.
The next verse in Isaiah, Isaiah 26:4, says, “Trust in the LORD always, for the LORD GOD is the eternal Rock.” The peace that God gives us when we trust in Him is a peace that we can count on. It’s not a fleeting peace. It’s a solid, unshakable peace. Why? Because God is the eternal Rock, he is our form foundation and, as Jesus taught us in the Parable of the Builders (Matthew 7:24-29), the person who builds his home on a foundation of solid rock will see that house stand through the worst storms life can bring. When we put our trust in God, we are building our hopes, our faith, our lives, on that solid rock foundation and, when the storms of life threaten to shake us, we will not be shaken but will withstand the storms with the peace of God guarding our hearts and our minds.
Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.