This is part two of a two-part series on peace. You can read part one here.
When do you feel most at peace?
Have you ever felt a lack of peace, even though your situation is actually very peaceful?
Beth Moore shares this great perspective on peace:
“I believe peace comes in situations completely surrendered to the sovereign authority of Christ. Sometimes when we finally give up trying to discover all the answers to the whys in our lives and decide to trust the sovereign God, unexpected peace washes over us like a summer rain. We sometimes lack peace in far less strenuous circumstances because we are not as desperate or likely to turn them over to God.” source
Have you ever experienced this peace paradox? I know I have.
In the midst of work and a full load of classes, I’ve seen the power of God’s peace that “surpasses all understanding” (Philippians 4:7) despite what can be quite stressful circumstances.
At the same time, I have also had times in life where I am not very busy at all, and yet my peace level runs dangerously low.
One of my most favorite paintings is Miranda (The Tempest) by John William Waterhouse
I see this painting as a beautiful metaphor for peace. In this image, although chaos swirls around Miranda, she appears to be standing steadfast and at peace on solid ground.
Regardless of whether or not your circumstances are peaceful, you can still be at peace.
We all have things that test our peace. Thankfully, we can choose how we deal with these things.
I’ve found that taking time to get up early in the morning to saturate myself with God’s word, to pray, and to surrender my day to God, makes all the difference. Without submitting to God and letting him direct my life, I am much more likely to turn to worry before I turn to him.
Sure, getting up early in the morning may cause me to be more tired than if I had gotten 30 extra minutes of sleep.
But, I can promise you that being a little extra tired with a mind renewed by God’s Word and rejuvenated by spending time with him, is so much better than being well-rested and anxious/stressed/worried.
(If you can be well-rested and have time to spend in God’s Word, that’s even better!)
Finally, I love what Pastor and author John Bevere writes:
“The intimacy God wants to share with us increases as we release to Him our unmet needs and our expectations of others and ourselves. It occurs by degrees as we surrender our mind, emotions, and will to Him. It occurs in obedience to His will as we look to Him moment by moment for inspiration and accept His equipping and His empowerment. He intends that His grace should infuse every aspect of our lives.” source
I encourage you to delve more into this intimacy with God. Enjoying his presence and surrendering your needs and fears to him brings amazing peace and strength even in the most trying times.