This month we are looking at God as our Jehovah Shalom, the Lord our Peace. Peace is a promise that Jesus gives to his followers.
“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27
When we need an example of someone who demonstrated peace in the midst of chaotic circumstances, we need only look to Jesus.
In Mark 4, He and the disciples were in a boat when a storm blew up and waves engulfed the boat. Jesus was asleep in the boat and the disciples frantically woke him up. Jesus’ words to the wind and the seas were “Peace be still” (Mark 4:39).
In the middle of a hungry crowd of 5,000 people the disciples wanted to send everyone away because they had no idea how they were going to feed all those people. Jesus, however, instructed them to feed the people. I can imagine the disciples’ incredulous looks, because I am sure I would have been doing the same thing myself. I know how I worry over whether I have enough food to feed my guests at Thanksgiving, let alone 5,000 uninvited guests! Jesus told them to take stock on what they did have, then blessed it and kept passing it around.
In the Garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was deeply distressed. Yet, he had the presence of mind to maintain His composure when the guards came to arrest Him and even healed the high priest’s servant after Peter cut his ear off (Luke 22:51).
We need to ask the question, What was the source of Jesus’ peace?
I think that many of us naturally would say that of course Jesus would have this peace because He was God. But, we also need to remember that He was fully man, too, and had to experience life as a man.
I believe Jesus’ peace was because of one main thing: prayer.
All throughout the scriptures, Jesus took time to get away from the crowds of people to go to pray. Mark 6:46 is one example. “And when He had sent them away, He departed to the mountain to pray.” This was just after the feeding of the five thousand. Praying to His Father kept Jesus calm and in unity with God’s plans. It also gave Him security. Jesus knew where He came from and where He was going.
This begs the question, Do you know where you came from and where you are going?
Is your identity tied up in Christ? Do you have the assurance that He has got your past sins and mistakes covered and that You belong to Him? When we have that settled in our lives, when we have asked Christ to forgive us of our sins and to take control of our lives, it gives us the assurance we need to face the future with confidence that God has our backs. No matter what we face, He is there with us.
Tomorrow we are going to further explore how prayer and peace are tied up together in our lives. Until then, pray on!