Stop for a moment and just listen. What do you hear? Maybe the neighbor’s lawnmower… the barking dog a few houses down… a clock ticking… the cars on the street.
Now stop for a moment and just listen to the noise inside. What is keeping your heart from being quiet and at peace? Most likely, it’s many things, because although we long for peace, real life intrudes.
A call from the doctor
A note from the teacher about a child’s behavior
A lost job and a pile of bills
Real life does not foster internal peace!
In the last major conversation Jesus had with His closest friends, He spoke about peace — but not as we might have expected Him to. When I read Jesus saying,
I’ve told you all this so that you may have peace — John 16:33,
my first question is All what? If I didn’t look back to John 15 to see what Jesus had been saying, I’d guess that keys to peace would be something along these lines:
“You’re going to live to a ripe old age.”
“Your children will rise up and call you blessed — even when they hit fifteen.”
“You will always have enough money for all you need and most of what you want.”
“You will hear the Lord tell you ‘Well done’ after a lifetime of faithfulness.”
Sounds good, right? But not one of these things was included in the strangest “peace speech” I’ve ever read. Turn to John 15 and you’ll see that Jesus told His closest friends that they would be persecuted and no longer welcome in places they used to go. Go to John 16:2 and you’ll find these devastating words:
You will be expelled from the synagogues, and the time is coming when those who kill you will think they are doing a holy service for God.
Clearly the peace Jesus spoke about is not what we think of at all. He was saying to His disciples — and to you and me today — “It’s going to get rough down here, but don’t worry. I am with you. I will never leave you. And I am your peace.”
No matter what is going on in your life, stop for a moment speak His name out loud: “Jesus… Jesus… Jesus.” Know that He is with you and that He is for you even when the storm is raging all around.
Peace is not the absence of trouble; it is the presence of Christ.
Five Minutes in the Word
I am leaving you with a gift — peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. — John 14:27
Those who love Your instructions have great peace and do not stumble. — Psalm 119:165
I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world. — John 16:33
In peace I will lie down and sleep, for You alone, O Lord, will keep me safe. — Psalm 4:8
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. — Isaiah 9:6-7
Excerpted with permission from 5 Minutes with Jesus by Sheila Walsh, copyright Sheila Walsh.
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Real life comes at us fast and hard. It doesn’t give breaks. It doesn’t slow down. Real life doesn’t foster internal peace. That kind of peace, real and lasting peace only comes from Jesus. Come share your thoughts with us on our blog. We want to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily