Short Meditations on Peace 7. And Us?
Phil 4:6,9 Do not be anxious about anything …. the God of peace will be with you.
The previous meditation may have seemed alarmingly harsh but is, I believe, a realistic assessment of our unsaved neighbour, but what about ourselves? What about our lives? It is possible that some parts of that assessment apply to us. Maybe it is because we are new Christians who have not yet learned the ways of Christ, or maybe it is simply that we belong to churches where the teaching leaves much to be desired, or maybe it is simply that without thought we have drifted into ways of living that align themselves with the ways of ‘the world’ that are contrary to the ways of Christ.
The apostle John wrote about ‘the world’ meaning the godless way of thinking that is prevalent in so much of the population of the world, and summed it up as, “the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does.” (1 Jn 2:16) i.e. pleasure driven, wanting more of what he sees, and a life of boasting and being concerned with what others think. If we allow these three areas to prevail in our lives, it will be no surprise that we are stressed, worrying, anxious, discontented and yearning for more, which is all summed up as an absence of peace!
So yes, peace is a commodity that we can take for granted as Christians and maybe we have not realised the reality of the Lord’s presence there in our lives and so we are worriers, and worriers know little of peace.
How do we get back to a right place? Commit your way to the Lord, put all your concerns into His hands and rest in His love for you. That is how peace comes. That is the starting place. If I simply say ‘pray’, how glib that can sound, but yes, it is through prayer but that supposes that we have the comfort of knowing that He is there, listening and hearing and attending to us, loving us and being there for us. If we doubt any of these things peace will be absent. In these days of talk of ‘mindfulness’ and well-being, peace is an elusive commodity but one that is regained when you wait on Him and come into His presence. Paul said peace comes through prayer, encountering God (Phil 4:6).
With Him there is always peace because as we said in a previous meditation, the Lord is in control and is never stressed but is always at peace. The Lord is perfect and complete and has no needs outside Himself. He is all-powerful, all knowing and all-wise, and so is never stressed but always at total peace. That peace surrounds Him and so when we come into His presence, we too will experience His peace. We will also face the things that rob us of our peace.