BY FAITH WE HAVE PEACE
Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7
PRACTICING THE PEACE OF GOD
The only way, the peace of Christ will rule in our hearts, is if we practice it. Colossians 3:15 continues with: “And be thankful!” Giving thanks goes hand-in-hand with practicing peace.
Both of the Apostle Peter’s letters opens with the radical thought that grace and peace can be multiplied! If peace needs to be multiplied, what depletes God’s peace in our lives? As believers we are at peace with God through faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior. But in our walk on earth we are charged by the Apostle Paul to “let peace rule in our hearts!” When peace is overruled by fear and anxiety, peace is no longer ruling in our heart!
The peace that Jesus speaks of in John 14:27 is radically different from the peace the world gives. The world’s view of peace is a cheap substitute and contradiction to the peace of God.
“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.” John 14:27 (NIV)
In one of Jesus’ final teachings, He commands us not to allow our hearts (mind, will and emotions) to be troubled or agitated. Paul challenges us in Colossians 3:15, to let the peace of Christ rule in our hearts. The disconnect is that we often grow slack in guarding our hearts.
Paul’s words to the Philippians should motivate and recenter our priorities to practice peace:
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving present your requests to God.” Anxiety is countered by prayer.
Taking daily inventory of what we hear ourselves say and making adjustments is part of the daily practice needed to keep the peace of God prominent in our lives. The result? Real Peace!“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:4-7 The unguarded heart becomes an anxious heart.