In life, obtaining, and then keeping, a sense of
peace is harder than winning a war. In the domain that really counts, the reverse is true: if
you win the war for your soul (obtain eternal salvation), then a growing personal peace is a
natural byproduct. As you mature in the faith by personal experience AND knowledge of God's
work in other lives, your sense of personal peace grows and grows. Why would anyone not want
a life filled with peace?
When was the last time you experienced true peace?
Are you living in a state of joy & contentment, secure in the knowledge that you are one
of His, that God is in control, and that your life is on track? God wants to see your life
filled with peace, and peace comes with the knowledge that comes with a personal & living
relationship with God...a relationship that is actually experienced day after day. You can be
filled with the peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7). That state simply
cannot be explained...the divinely gifted serenity is wonderful, deeply satisfying, and far
beyond our understanding!
John 14:27 teaches that God's granted peace &
joy in you are unaffected by situations and circumstances. It protects our minds from
troubling thoughts and our hearts from painful emotions. That is the kind of peace God wants
us to have. The question is: how does a person get that peace?
In the 4th chapter of Philippians, verse 11, the
apostle Paul tells us that his own contentment is a learned quality...a conscious decision.
The decision is based on faith and knowledge, and you are blessed/granted a potentially
growing measure of peace upon deciding that you are just going to trust in God. By not
deciding so, we essentially chose to lay down and turn away from the gift of peace. Whereas
many chose to blame people or circumstances for stealing away (or depriving them of peace in
the first place) their peace, the fact is that your decisions are to blame.
To protect the measure of peace we have, so far,
obtained and to keep growing in peace, we must grow our relationship with God...keep on
experiencing God. Sin and disobedience hinder that relationship and, therefore, the degree of
fullness of the sense of peace. Do a check-up and see where you may have faltered and pray
for the help of your Shepherd (Jesus) and your internal enabler (the Holy Spirit). Like a
perpetual vegetable garden, regular attention is always needed! (This write-up is after a
Sept. 2003 letter from Rev. Charles Stanley).
***give me your comments about this
check out the Highest
(posted 1 September 2003)