“Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid”, said Jesus Christ. If we look at the world today and even in our hearts, it is very evident that many are under the heavy grip of anxiety about the Covid-19 situation. Peace is the most essential need of the hour. Not only during this Covid situation but we need peace every day of our lives.
For many, peace has become life’s quest yet living a life of fear, worry & anxiety. Getting anxious, worried & having fear is normal but there is a difference when these factors take control of our lives. We miss living in the present by worrying about the future with thoughts of “What If” questions. What if we have a major health issue? What if we lose our job? what if our financial needs are not met? What if our children’s future is not secured? and many other “what if” questions. You see, living in peace is the opposite of living in anxiety & worry. We cannot eliminate all the problems of life but the peace which Jesus Christ has promised can overcome worry & anxiety. When this peace fills us, there is no place to all the negativity in our hearts and minds. You see, worry can rob the joy God has promised us. It can rob the assurance and it can rob our life as well. Do you have this peace in your life? If this peace which God has promised is lacking, how can we get it?
“6. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”Philippians 4:6-7
These are one of my favorite verses in the Bible. Paul wrote these verses to the Philippian church when he was in a Roman prison. These encouraging words were in the closing of the letter. We see anxiety is not just our generation thing and it was a problem Paul’s days as well.
Peace of God:
By calling this peace as the peace of God, we can understand there is another kind of peace that we can get by out effort, people, things, and maintaining the state of mind. A lot of people follow different ways to be in a peaceful state. This peace vanishes when the underlying things or situation changes. Bible says that our God is a God of peace. You see, peace is a character of God himself. This peace doesn’t depend on our situation, people, or even ourselves. It is based on God and He is the source of this peace.
This peace of God transcends human understanding. No one can explain why we have that peace when things are not that great. If we see Apostle Paul’s life, we cannot grasp how Paul could have had that peace in those troubled times and the same applies to our situations. This peace is above all understanding and only God can give you this peace. No one else and nothing else can give this peace. This peace is beyond human understanding.
This peace guards our hearts and minds. When we think of peace, we think of being in a tranquil, passive, and resting state. The peace of God is more than these experiences. God’s peace protects and guards us. It is like a shield protecting us. You see, anxiety attacks our hearts and minds and destructive to our physical & spiritual health. But God’s peace protects our hearts and minds. It keeps away anxiety & worry which tries to take control of hearts & minds.
How to get this peace of God?
From verse 6, we see prayer is the means to get this peace. Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given” and promised to give His peace. Our loving heavenly Father cares for us and wants to see fill us with this peace. Prayer is the way to get the peace of God. Many of us understand the importance of prayer and do pray. If we do pray, and prayer is the means to get the peace of God, why many of us believers still struggling & living in worry? Let’s read verse 6 again. You see, Paul could have just said “prayer” but he elaborated and explained on the essence of prayer. The essence of prayer is having fellowship with God. Prayer is not just a time to ramble on our requests or a religious tradition. Prayer is a time to have fellowship with God. It is a time to know, to experience God to rejoice in God, to talk, and to have a conversation with God. Think about your prayer life, Are you having fellowship with God? How is your prayer life?
If we have a real fellowship & relationship with God, we can bring everything to Him in prayer. God understands our problems and He asks us to cast our burdens on him. Are you ready to cast your burdens on Him? If we don’t have trust and fellowship, we might pray but not ready to cast the burdens. God wants us to experience the fullness of joy, peace & rest. As the verse says, are we submitting all our requests? God is willing to take our burdens and give us rest to our souls. Paul had repeated many times about rejoicing in the lord in the book of Philippians. Are we rejoicing in the Lord? Is there real thanksgiving in our prayer time? Are we enjoying & rejoicing in his fellowship?
Jesus said, “I am the vine; you are the branches“ . He is the source of our spiritual life. Unless we are connected to Him, we cannot produce fruits in our lives. You see, peace is one of the fruits of the Spirit. We can bear this fruit of peace being connect to Christ in fellowship and filled with His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit enables our fellowship and makes us bear much-needed peace in our life. The Holy Spirit works in us and enables us to be in constant fellowship with our heavenly Father. If we have ongoing fellowship with God every day, we can have the peace of God protecting us every day. Many times, we take the guard of peace down opening our hearts & minds to the attacks of anxiety & worry. When we have constant fellowship with our Father, God fills us with His peace which is above all human understanding and guard our hearts and minds.
How is your prayer life? When you finished praying. Can you say that you had fellowship with God? When Jesus talked about prayer, He showed the model on how to have that sweet fellowship with the Father. Paul, David, Daniel, and many other saints in the Bible showed how to have that fellowship through prayer. We have seen the peace of God in their lives even during the storms of life. Fellowship with God is the essence of prayer. We need this peace of God if we are lacking; the peace which transcends human understanding and guards our hearts and minds. Only God can grant this peace; no one or nothing can give this peace. He is more than willing to grant this peace. Lets us remain in His fellowship and be filled with this peace of God! Amen!