Two Scriptures that go along with this one are Romans 15:5, “May the God Who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus.” and Colossians 3:15, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.” We are to actively endeavor to live at peace with one another…living in harmony as one collective body called the Church, of which Jesus Christ is the head. But unity and peace can be difficult to obtain, so what can we do? First, understand that the only person you can change is you. That’s why Hebrews 12:14 tells us that we should make every effort to live in peace with all men and to be holy. Or as the old song goes, “Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me…”
Everyone wants to live a successful, satisfied, and secure life…but what if yours is anything but. Maybe you’re unhappy in your workplace with a overbearing Boss and back-stabbing co-workers? Have you ever considered praying for them? I Timothy 2:1-2 tells us to pray for all of those in authority over us that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. Your intercessory prayers can change the atmosphere at work, and they can change people’s attitudes…yours included. Are you unhappy in your marriage or with family relationships? Would you be willing to start praying on behalf of those who are causing you pain right now? For again, your prayers can change situations, family dynamics, and bring peace into those difficult relationships. Because anytime we start praying for someone, our perspective changes about them…for we take on God’s view, not ours.
Do you realize just how much God loves you? He’s not stingy or tight-fisted with His compassion towards you. Nor does His unconditional love depend on how good you are any peculiar day …or how many “works” you have on your mental score-sheet. God’s grace and love towards you is generous, abundant, and more than enough to cover anything that happens to you today.
Paul writes to the Church in Corinth about orderly worship. He stresses to them that everything be done in a fitting and harmonious way. (I Corinthians 14:40) When we see disunity within the Body, we know this is not of God…for He is the God of peace. (Romans 15:33) As Believers, we need to be seeking balance and mutual agreement…not causing turmoil and commotion just to make a point. Many a Church has faced divided factions only to self-destruct rather than build bridges of unity. And Satan smiles every time a Church self-implodes rather than attempts to reconcile the Body.
In this contentious and ever argumentative world, it’s difficult to seek peace in every situation. But the key here is found in a verse in Hebrews 12:14, ” Make every effort to live in peace with all men and be holy.” Being holy means we live in a spiritual atmosphere where grace and mercy abounds despite the hostile environment around us. It’s where we consider others before ourselves and strive to be a peacemaker not a rabble-rouser.
Today, this Scripture would be my prayer for you…no matter where you are in your walk with the Lord. I ask that God’s grace and peace…His unearned and unmerited favor, would be lavished on you, and that you would come to realize just how much He loves you. Great word lavish! It speaks of profusion, extravagance, and of showering down abundantly. It’s used in I John 3:1, where it states, “How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God!” I pray that you would experience that abundant love for yourself today.
I don’t know about you, but patience has never been one of my greatest attributes. I want something to happen now, not later…and I get antsy and anxious when I have to wait. But if you look carefully at this Scripture, you’ll see Micah concluded there are two things we need to do…watch and wait. So, what does it take to successfully watch and wait for the Lord? In a word – it takes trust. To trust in the Lord is not a one time, one size fits all event. Trusting in God is an ongoing, ever-growing, process of waiting in hopeful expectation and increasing belief that He will do what He says. Our job isn’t to manufacture the outcome…or job is to rest in Him, waiting and watching as He does the work in our life.
In this world of immediate gratification… where there seems to be no control or limits placed on decency or morality anymore…should we be surprised when young people aimlessly wander through life without goals, plans, and purpose? Their whole life has been centered around the next selfie…the next Social Media post…the next momentary pleasure. For when you ask them what they want to be doing in five years and how they’re going about achieving that right now…they give you a blank stare. Without direction, we flounder. Without limits, we lose inhibitions. Without a plan and purpose, our life is truly meaningless and empty. God has a plan and purpose for everyone…a wonderful life full of joy, self-discovery, and most of all peace.
We find the disciples hunkered down, doors locked, fearing what might happen to them…when suddenly Jesus shows up! And during this short interaction these frightened men went from fainthearted to fearless. So what was it? It was the 3 “P”s. First it says that Jesus came and stood among them and showed them His hands and side. His presence was undisputable to them now…the Resurrection beyond doubt. Next was Jesus’s greeting, “Peace be with you!” This type of peace supersedes anything we can imagine…it is brought about by God’s infinite mercy, granting deliverance and freedom from all distresses. Finally, Jesus breathed on them and they received the power of the Holy Spirit. His presence, peace and power turned a rag-tag group of men into a force to be reckoned with.
The yearning we feel inside is a Jesus-shaped void. Although we try to fill it with lots of things…the spiritual thirst is still there. And it’s not until we have that “Coming to Jesus” moment, that the void can be filled. Matthew 5:5 tells us, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled.” Quit trying to fill the hole inside you with junk, it’ll never work and only leave you more unhappy. Jesus is the only answer to finding peace in your life today.