Tag : peace
Tag : peace
“Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” (Matthew 10:39)
I was reading a devotional this week where the author said that every morning she lifts up her hands to God, surrendering her day to Him.
I thought, I need to start doing this each day—physically opening up empty hands to my heavenly Father. Whatever you want to give me, LORD. While I spend a lot of time in prayer each morning, I don’t always give Him daily carte blanche.
When I think about the Christmas story, isn’t that what Mary did when the angel Gabriel told her she would give birth to the Savior of the world, Jesus? Mary, in a sense, raised empty hands when she said, “May your word to me be fulfilled” (Luke 1:38).
Didn’t Joseph surrender? When he learned about Mary’s pregnancy, he planned to divorce her quietly. However, when an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream to explain it all, he accepted the plan, and took Mary as his wife after all.
Jesus raised up his empty hands, giving up a comfortable seat at the right hand of His heavenly Father to be born in a cattle feeding trough, and later sacrifice His life so that we might have life.
It’s the ultimate surrender.
I think about what a difference surrendering would have made—even today—when there were some last-minute changes with our radio show. Would I have relaxed more and not have allowed anxiety to rule?
What about the mountain of presents I wrapped this afternoon? Would it have been as tedious?
There’s an event I am involved in today that will require a lot of energy. Will I lift up empty hands and allow God to fill me, and not try to do this in my own power?
Then there are family and friends I worry about, causing a wringing of hands. I now know many people who have been stricken with COVID. All of our immediate family members are traveling this week. A friend was in an automobile accident. Will I make the exchange of worry from my hands to God’s hands?
What do you need to surrender to your all-powerful heavenly Father today?
Even now, will you lift up your empty hands to not only turn over your day, but to receive whatever God has to offer you? Trusting that our Omnipotent God has every aspect of our lives in His hands is one way to experience peace.
Are you struggling to maintain Peace?
THE PEACE OF GOD IS A GIFT.
With all the turmoil we are encountering right now, everything may seem uncertain so it’s easy to slip into the spirit of fear, anxiety, and depression. It’s like a bad-fitting shoe that rubs a painful blister on our heel. We find it difficult to maintain the peace that we once had, the peace that the Scripture speaks about in Philippians.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 6–7).
I love that passage.
The word for “peace” in Hebrew is “Shalom.” The connotation is positive. When someone says, “Shalom,” or, “Peace unto you,” it doesn’t mean, “I hope you don’t get into any trouble.” It means, “I hope you have all the highest good coming your way.”
Someone wrote. “God is like Coke. He’s the real thing.”
“God is like General Electric. He lights your path.”
“God is like Hallmark Cards. He cares enough to give His best.”
“God is like VO5 Hair Spray. He holds through all kinds of weather.”
In spite of all of the clichés, He is a God like no other, it is my desire that we get to know Him better and understand the peace that only He provides. I want to us to learn more about who He is, so we can obtain a better understanding of what He can be to us as His children in the midst of this crisis. He is the Prince of Peace.
Did you notice that the apostle Paul said, “The Peace of God“— not our peace, Why? Because our peace fluctuates. It is only the Peace of God that will sustain us.
I was an example of someone lacking peace. Many years ago, I suffered from a nervous breakdown, and now I am totally healed thanks to the mercy of God. So I can differentiate between when I am walking in the peace that fluctuates, and when I am walking in the Peace of God. I can wholeheartedly tell you I prefer the peace of God. That’s why I have a personal saying that I now use daily: “I refuse to worry.”
When we speak about peace, we are talking about a subject that is largely unknown in the world. All we have to do is turn on the evening news to discover that peace is a stranger in many parts of the world. However, it doesn’t have to be that way for us. We can receive the “Peace of God,” a fruit of the Holy Spirit that is ours if we ask for it. No matter what is going on in our lives we can be confident that God is the same yesterday, today and forever and is always with us, He promises that he cannot and will not fail us. He is the source of our peace. It’s a gift from our heavenly Father.
Isaiah 26:3 says, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”
Trust Him in the midst of this Pandemic.
May God richly bless you.
Don’t miss our next POP Chat, this Wednesday, July 29th on ZOOM at 6:30 p.m.. Dr. Lynnette Simm will be teaching about “How to Find Your Peace” and Renee Rollins will lead our worship for this beautiful one-hour of fellowship. Here’s the link to sign up: https://share.hsforms.com/15bHBupdrTBugXxD9Y8Q_MQ3jo4z
The word of God taught us that we are saved by grace and that is a gift. In order for us to affectively embrace all that we are taught, I believe we must also operate in the “fruit of the Spirit.”
Today I chose one of the fruits of the Spirit and that is “gentleness.” But before I begin I would like to lay a foundation with the passage about the fruit of the Spirit found in the Bible. Galatians 5:22–23 says, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Colossians 3:12 provides an addendum: “Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”
First, I must say that many people have branded me as gentle and soft spoken, but as I was preparing this blog to encourage you in the Spirit of Gentleness. I realize there is more to being gentle and soft spoken. So I looked up the meaning of “gentleness’ and found there are a lot of different ways to dissect the word “gentleness.” Gentleness is “the quality of being considerate or kind in disposition, being friendly and tender, mild and soft, refined and polite.” And the opposite of gentleness is “harsh or severe.” As I pondered the definition, I considered Jesus, He is all powerful, but never misuses his power. He is gentle with his unruly children (us) He is the perfect father who never reacts in anger. Someone who is walking by the Spirit is going to be a gentle person. No matter what the circumstances, they will remain gentle. Not because of weakness but because of the strength that Jesus provides. “We can do all things through Christ who gives you strength.” (Philippians 4:13).
Jesus gave us the perfect picture of gentleness in Matthew 21:5: “See, your King comes to you, gentle and riding on a donkey.” And now He offers us His gentleness as a gift. If we allow the Holy Spirit to lead us, we will be filled with all of the fruit of the Spirit and will be gentle like Jesus.
When we are filled with the Spirit’s fruit of gentleness, we will correct others with calmness instead of arguing in resentment and anger, we will forgive readily, because any offense toward us is nothing compared to our offenses against God. When we are filled with the spirit of gentleness, competition and hatred will disappear, as the goal becomes less about ourselves and more about people seeing the Christ in us. The word of God says; “By their fruits you will know them” (Matthew 7:6). As we walk in the fruit “gentleness,” our behavior must be genuine and consistent because people are constantly watching us.
I told you before, people think I am gentle and soft spoken. Why? That is because they have been watching me. Gentleness also means giving up the right to judge what is best for us and others. You see, God is not as concerned with our comfort as He is concerned with our spiritual growth. That is why he wants our lives to depict the fruit of the Spirit. He knows how to grow us far better than we do, and offers us His gentleness as a gift.
Remember the value that God places on the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. Gentleness also means “putting up with stuff.” So, brand the image of Jesus and His suffering onto your mind and your heart. Clothe yourself in the fruit of the Spirit. And as you “put up with stuff” you will cultivate the fruit of God’s gentleness.
“But in your hearts revere Christ as LORD. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect (1 Peter 3:15).
If you are still struggling to implement any aspect of the fruit, take time to read Gal 5: 22-23 and ask the Holy Spirit to help you. He will because He cannot and will not fail you.
Don’t miss our next POP Chat, July 29th on ZOOM at 6:30 p.m.. Dr. Lynnette Simm will be teaching about “How to Find Your Peace” and Renee Rollins will lead our worship for this beautiful one-hour of fellowship. Here’s the link to sign up: https://share.hsforms.com/15bHBupdrTBugXxD9Y8Q_MQ3jo4z