Do you know where you’ll go when you die? If you’re a Believer, do you have the trust to confidently state, “Yes, I’m going to heaven.” Or do you stand there today just hoping you’ll make it? This verse should then refute that gnawing uncertainty in your mind once and for all. For when we put our faith and trust in Jesus Christ, we are reconciled and placed in right standing with God. And the peace brought about by this reconciliation to our Heavenly Father overshadows any doubt or fear our minds may have. So stand now in faith and righteousness through Jesus Christ our Lord and be assured of your eternal life.
Most of us have a hard time expressing our condolences to a friend that’s just lost a loved one. We stumble around, trying hard to say something that will bring comfort. But it’s only the Lord that can truly bring solace and peace during a time of anguish and mental pain. Probably one of the most uncaring things to say is, “I know how you feel.” No you don’t, and you never will. Grief and grieving is unique to everyone, and all of us will go through it differently. But with the Lord’s help, grief will be soothed… fears will be quieted… peace will still frantic thoughts…and over time, joy will return.
We are to live in harmony with all. Not with just those we like…not with those who only believe as we do. No, we are to live in peaceful co-existence with everyone. Jesus came preaching the Gospel of Peace, not that of elitism, isolation, or hatred. It’s a tough road though to love your neighbor as yourself…for many around us are unlovable. That’s why the second part of this verse is so important. We may not be able to change the unlovable around us, but we can change ourselves and how we interact with them. Sanctification or holiness is the ongoing process of becoming more like Christ Jesus everyday…of looking at all people – even the unlovable- through His eyes.
Make no mistake about it…as a Believer, the deep sense of well-being you feel today has been brought about by a loving and merciful Heavenly Father. And the next time before you pat yourself on the back for the great achievement you’ve just done…remember, that it’s only through Him that you’ve realized this success.
There’s something to say about meeting with the Lord early in the morning before the world has a chance to inundate our minds with junk. For the past 30 some years the Lord and I have had a date at 5 AM around the kitchen table. Why so early? First, I want to give the Lord my best, not the left-overs from a hectic day when I’m way too tired to concentrate. But more importantly, it sets the tone for my entire day if I’m in the Word first not last.
We hear and accept the Word of life…the Holy Spirit comes to take up residence within, and we have the reassurance of eternal life. But we also overflow with that living water, for it says in John 7:38, “Whoever believes in Me, streams of living water will flow from within him.” Our lives spill over with joy, peace and love for others to see.
Just after my sister began chemotherapy for breast cancer they found a suspicious nodule on my mammogram. My first inclination was to call everyone I knew to pray, but the Lord stopped me cold…”Trust in Me” He whispered. ” Alright”, I countered, “but what about just a few of my prayer warrior friends?” Again God’s reply was “Trust in Me.” That evening Landy and I prayed, and the next morning this scripture in Romans jumped out at me. “Lord, my trust is in you and no one else, please fill me with all peace and joy as I wait on you.” I prayed. The Ultrasound showed just a benign fluid filled cyst, nothing worrisome at all. As I thanked God for this good report I pondered what lesson He wanted me to take from this all. By putting all my confidence in Him I was filled with hope,joy,and peace as I trusted in Him. I then could overflow with that same kind of faith and confidence every time I prayed for someone else. My faith has grown by this experience, my confidence in my God has only deepened.