Personal Peace in the Middle of Problems

23 12 2009

I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid. John 14:27

Jesus offers to us peace of heart and mind as a gift, because He knows that peace is something that we all desperately need. He doesn’t say He is going to take away all our difficulties so we can have peace. Life is always going to be a series of problems, but He promises something better: Peace IN the middle of your problems. But what holds us back from experiencing that kind of personal peace? There are four things Christ has been teaching me…

1. Accept What Cannot Be Changed

Acceptance is the key to personal peace. When you are struggling with a situation, do what God gives you the strength to do, but when you hit a wall and there is nothing more that can be done, accept what cannot be changed. Acceptance says “since there are many things that are outside of my control, I am going to put my trust in the One who is in control of everything.” (See SERENITY PRAYER post.)

2. Learn from Christian Mentors
When Mary heard she was going to be mother of Jesus, the first thing she did was to go spend time with Elizabeth (Luke 1:39-40, 56). Over the next three months, Elizabeth, who herself had been through a lot of ups and downs in life, mentored Mary spiritually to become the person God wanted her to be. We all need a Lizzy in our lives to teach us how to live at peace in the middle of problems. If you are struggling with peace, seek out a Christian mentor who you can learn from.

3. Focus on God’s Mercy
Did you ever notice how you can be perfectly content, but one trip to the mall ruins all that. What happened? Your focus changed. Instead of focusing on what you have, you begin to focus on what you don’t. If you are struggling with peace, focus on the things that God HAS done for you. Don’t worry about anything; instead pray about everything; tell God your needs and don’t forget to thank Him for His answers. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. Philippians 4:6-7

4.Lean on God’s Faithfulness
A number of years ago, Jesse Ventura (formerly “the body” and governor of Minnesota) stated “Christianity is a crutch for weak people.” He was so wrong. Christianity is not a crutch for weak people; Christianity is more like a wheelchair for disabled people. We’re all disabled with sin and struggles. And relying on our own strength and faithfulness, will alway lead to more anxiety and more stress. If you are struggling with peace, stop trying to do life on your own and lean on the One who has always been faithful to you.

The faithful love of the Lord never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; 
 His mercies begin afresh each morning. I say to myself, “The Lord is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in Him!” Lamentations 3:22-24

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