Monday, December 31, 2012

An Unparelled Peace

Here I go again, copying a lesson from my daily Bible study book, "Feature." I'm glad it's not copyrighted with a message stating that it cannot be copied because it has many good lessons.
            We live in a time where peace is scarce. Without jobs, unemployment running out, and people feeling desperate, hope and peace seem to be hiding in the depths of the ocean. Relationships are strained as finances become high wire balancing acts with the ends fraying rapidly. People begin to feel hopeless and worried, afraid that things will never get better. Alcohol and drug abuse often become easy escapes from the pressure, but the come-down only leaves those people feeling worse.
            Today, nations are seeking peace but failing to find it. Religions are looking for peace, yet it eludes them. Individuals are searching for various kinds of peace, but they lack peace more than ever before. Do you want real peace today and throughout this coming new year? It can only be found in Jesus Christ, the Living Word, and in the Bible, the written Word. Jesus promised His peace to those who would heed His Word and submit to the ministry of the Holy Spirit, the Comforter (John 14:26, 27). This peace is not available through the world. Only the genuine, perfect peace of God results in untroubled hearts and in the banishment of all fear. This peace can be ours even in the very midst of tribulation; we are to be filled with joy (not the same as happiness) at the assurance that our Lord has overcome the world (John 16:33). In these difficult days, Satan seeks to fill believers with fear regarding their overwhelming circumstances. But God's Word promises, "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee" (Is. 26:3). Are we looking to Him when trials happen?
            It is important to realize that peace with God through faith in our Lord Jesus Christ (Rom. 5:1) is a prerequisite to experiencing  "the peace of God, which passeth all understanding" (Phil. 4:7). Also, we must not forget that this perfect peace is intrinsically coupled with prayer and thanksgiving—the only way to avoid anxiety (Phil. 4:6). We all need this divinely given grace in these troublesome times. If we truly want peace, we must remember that it cannot be obtained through determination or self-effort. With a yielded heart, we must "let the peace of God rule in our hearts" (Col. 3:15).

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