Posts Tagged ‘ Peace ’

Sleep Like A Baby

He does not withdraw his eyes from the righteous… Job 36:7 NRSV

Newborn Baby in Mother HandThere are few scenes as beautiful or precious as a sleeping infant. Their sleep is so sound, and their bodies are so relaxed that it creates an almost idyllic image of peace. May be that’s why we talk about sleeping like a baby.

As we get older, a good sleep is no less important, but gets harder to find. The quality and duration of our sleep declines, and many of us go for days not feeling fully rested.

I wonder if part of what allows a baby to sleep so well is their implicit trust. As they fall asleep, their minds are probably not filled with to-do lists, or plans and concerns. They have a loved one watching over them, ready to respond to their needs. So they not only fall sleep, they really rest.

Knowing that you are the apple of God’s eye, and that your heavenly Father is loving you and watching over you, can help you find that same kind of rest. Even if you don’t have sleep problems, you can find real peace and true rest by remembering who God is, how much God loves you, and what God is able to do for you.

Trust the truth about God. Then you will be better able to rest in the Lord, and live like the child of God you are!

 Apple

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Looking For A Little Peace?

…Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 1:7 NRSV

MP900422425[1] People have some strange ideas about  peace. Some believe that once a terrorist leader is dead, peace is close by. Others believe peace is what we experience when there is an absence of conflict. Defeating terrorism and ending conflicts may make the world a safer place, but I’m not sure that’s the kind of peace Jesus left for us.

I sometimes think of peace as the time when there are no demands on me. In those moments, I finally feel like I have a little peace. But in reality, doing nothing often seems more empty than peaceful.

So if world peace isn’t really peace, and personal downtime doesn’t bring peace, then where can we go for the peace we most want and need?

Fortunately, peace doesn’t come from having everything just right. External conditions don’t really determine whether we have God’s peace or not.MP900402574[1] Peace comes from an internal position, a position of submission to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In that position we are welcomed into God’s presence, and given the peace that passes all understanding!

As we spend time in the presence of the Lord, we come to know the peace that transcends life’s most difficult times. Then, no matter what disaster strikes the world, no matter what conflict breaks out, no matter how deep our hurt or intense our suffering, we will have peace.

The apostle Paul knew that peace. He learned to be content no matter what condition he was in. Whether things were going right or wrong, he lived in the presence of God and knew peace. That’s why he told his fellow believers, “and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7 NRSV).

That’s the kind of peace I want and I wish for you too!

Remember, peace is found in the presence of God.

No peace? Know God!

Being Still

Be still and know that I am God! I am exalted among the nations I am exalted in the earth. Psalm 46:1 NRSV

RainbowThis is a verse I turn to again and again for strength and for peace. I try to remember it whenever I start feeling swept away by the swirling waters of frantic activity, or the mounting pressures of deadlines and due dates. What a refreshing breath of crisp, clean air comes with those two simple words, “Be still.”

MP900285001[1]But most of the time being still is easier said than done. My schedule is usually crammed, and I’m in constant motion. There is little time for being still. In those frantic times I wonder,” Can’t God keep up with me? Why do I have to slow down and be still?”

Well, you know that God has no trouble keeping up with me. God doesn’t need me to slow down either. I need to slow down. I need to set my priorities straight, and stop to remember who God is and what God has called me to do.

Look at what happens if I reverse the opening sentence of verse 10: “Know that I am God and be still.” The Lord is God, our Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer. Remembering that certainly gives me reason to pause, to be still, and to recommit myself to God’s care.

Know that I am God.

What God wants is for each of us to clear away things that clutter our hearts and distract our minds. Then we will have room to remember that the Lord, whom we worship, is King over all creation. Jesus, whom we serve, is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. He is the Lord of life and the King of Glory!

MP900425323[1] When we let the truth about God and Jesus ascend to the throne of our lives, then we will be still. Peace will flow like a river into our souls. Hurrying and scurrying will no longer seem so necessary. We will find ourselves attending to God’s work with a quiet confidence and steady determination. We will be enjoy Jesus’ refreshing and renewing grace. Most importantly, we will be awed and stilled by the magnificent glory of God!

We will be still.

Perhaps the lesson is that being still doesn’t come from stopping our frantic lives. It comes from taking the time to remember who God is, what God has done, and all the promises yet to come. When those great truths confront us, they settle us right down. They still our hearts and bathe us in peace.

Why not join me today, and take a moment to know that God is exactly who God says He is. Embrace the reality that God is totally in control, and will do everything God has purposed and promised to do! Then breathe in the still and fresh air of God’s peace!

Let God’s truth still you, today!

Prayer:

Great and glorious God, how awesome you are! When I stop to think of You and all you have done and are doing, I find myself settling right down. Even when life gets frantic, I know you are God. Write that truth on my heart, and keep it front and center on my mind. Then I will truly be able to be still!

Amen.

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A Message of Peace

“You know the message he sent to the people of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ – he is Lord of all.” Acts 10:36 NRSV

MP900432733[1] Peter was in a tough and tenuous situation. He violated Jewish law by stepping into a Gentile’s home. He was surrounded by a crowd of strangers, and had no idea why he was there.

Once he entered the house, Cornelius told of an angel that had visited him. Then Peter is told the crowd was there to hear his message. All of a sudden Peter understood why he was there, and he told them all about Jesus.

Peter’s words brought a message of peace to those gathered in Cornelius’ home. He told them peace was sent to the Jews in Jesus Christ. As he continued, he realized that Jesus’ peace was not for the Jews only, it was for everyone!

Jesus’ peace is for everyone!

Jesus was and is the Prince of Peace. Jesus brings peace because he is the Lord of all. As Lord, his authority puts down every enemy. His truth destroys every argument. His Spirit heals every hurt, and unites all who follow him under the banner of peace. With Jesus as Lord, there is no need for conflict. God’s will is done, and love is the order of the day!

MP900430642[1] What Peter wanted these Gentiles to know was that with Jesus peace is possible. Peace between God and humankind, peace between man and woman, peace between brother and sister, peace between friends, peace between enemies, and peace between nations, that is what God wants.

With Jesus peace is possible!

That’s a refreshing thought! It must have been a surprising thought for this crowd. Cornelius was not a man of peace. He was a Roman soldier trained for war. As such, he was Peter’s enemy. But all Peter had to talk about was peace!

The message of peace is one that I need, and I know our world sorely needs. Peter knew God wants to give peace, a peace that passes all understanding. But that peace is only possible through Jesus Christ!

The more we allow Jesus to be the Lord of our lives, the more barriers will begin to fall, strife will cease and peace will reign!

God’s message for you is the message of peace!

Prayer:

Giver of Peace, bring your peace into my life. Let your love rule in heart, your truth guide my mind and your peace fill my soul. Then make me an instrument of your peace. Use me to spread the love of Jesus so your kingdom might come and your peace reign over all!

Amen.

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Christmas Cheer

Looking for Christmas cheer? Sadly, some turn to dangerous and self-destructive behaviors as they try to escape the stress and struggles of life. They think they will find some Christmas cheer in a bottle or a drug-induced buzz.

What they discover is nothing like the joy, peace and love that the Christ child came to bring. God sent his only Son so that we could experience real cheer at Christmas!

MP900309705[1]For me, real cheer comes at that moment when gathered believers raise their voices and candles singing about a silent and holy night when all is calm and all is bright. That truth, jumping off the lips of believers proclaiming Jesus as the Light of the world, fills my heart with unspeakable joy!

I need joy just like you do. So let’s turn away from the cheap imitations this year. Let’s stop looking for love in all the wrong places.

Let’s look to Jesus Christ for the gifts of grace he offers all who follow him!

 

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A Calming Word

Life is seldom smooth sailing. The winds and waves often make our life’s journey difficult. But Jesus’ word calms even the most violent storm.

Mark 4:39 (45 kb)

Tell Jesus about the storm you are going through. Then, let Jesus speak peace into your life, and calm the turmoil today!