And on earth peace to those on whom His favor rests.
Peace on Earth? I look around and see nothing resembling peace on earth. How about you? Just look at politics, pandemic, and PEOPLE (not you… other people ;))….
Peace is defined as freedom from disturbances; tranquility; state or period where there is no war.
When people think about yoga they often picture a quiet, serene atmosphere where people are sitting calmly on their mats, eyes closed with a look of complete peace. There’s soft music playing or sounds of nature like water trickling to create an atmosphere of tranquility. No loud noises, no expectations, no judgements, only grace.
Yoga is many things: calming, unifying, strengthening, and above all peaceful. People seek yoga for stress, anxiety and tension relief in their mind, body and spirit. But does the relief and tranquility leave the mat with you?
Jesus said to His disciples on the day He was betrayed and given over to die, “Peace I leave you, My peace I give to you. I do not give as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27
What is this peace that Jesus has given us?
Let’s unpack this verse and see what the Holy Spirit reveals as we dig a little deeper & linger a little longer.
One of my go-to Bible study methods is to unpack a verse, word by word or phrase by phrase. Whatever stands out to me as I prayerfully read and sit with the verse.
Peace… My peace: “Jesus brings us peace with God, the end of spiritual enmity and striving to secure right standing with God through good works. Jesus also brings us peace of mind and heart, a state of being at rest despite difficult circumstances because we know God is in control.” Asheritah Ciucia Unwrapping the Names of Jesus
“Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts…” Colossians 3:15
Right away there’s a difference I notice between the peace of Jesus and the peace known by the world. If there wasn’t a difference, Jesus wouldn’t have said MY peace. What is His peace?
Automatically I think about the storm and the boat from 8:23-27. He was sleeping while the waves swept over the boat and the storm roared on. He wasn’t worry, He wasn’t afraid, He wasn’t bothered by the storm. He knew His power and authority over the storm, over the winds and waves.
His peace fills us when we choose Worship Over Worry, Trust over Tensions, Faith over Fear!!
His peace is understood when we experience it rather than try to explain it.
I leave with you… I give you:
The Holy Spirit teaches and reminds us of the Truth of God’s Word, filling us with assurance that His Word is flawless, True and never fails. The Holy Spirit is our gift from God to be our peace on earth: our comforter, helper, intercessor, strengthener and standby (AMP).
A gift is given, not earned or necessarily deserved. A gift has to be accepted by our heart & mind.
our heart= holds the assurance of God’s power + reign
our mind= meditates on the knowledge of God’s power + reign
I do not give as the world gives: We defined peace at the beginning… it is simply freedom from disturbances, tranquility and no war.
Living in this fallen world means there will always be disturbances, war, fighting, disease, disasters… trouble.
The peace of Jesus if an assurance deep within us that what we see with our eyes is only temporary and that Jesus has already won the war. He overcame the grave, disarming the powers and authors of the enemy (Colossians 2:15)
When our attentions and focus stay fixed on His Truth the disturbances of life stay mole hills rather than growing into mountains. (Isaiah 26:3)
Picture the illustration of the yoga class we envisioned earlier… so much tranquility and freedom from disquieting thoughts as one embraces a mental space of stillness where there is no war of thoughts. Unfortunately this isn’t sustainable or lasting.
Life happens. We need Jesus. We need peace that transcends our human intellect and fills us with joy despite the storms, winds and waves around us.
Do not let your hearts be troubled: The word let stands out to me here.
Let= allow, give space to, embrace
but LET the peace of Christ rule in our hearts… (Colossians 3:15)
We have a choice in what we allow into our lives, our thoughts and our hearts.
The original word troubled means disquiet, restless, to cause one inward commotion, disturb one’s equanimity (composure and mental calmness).
And do not be afraid: afraid= fearful. timid, scared, intimidated, cowardly
it’s time to suit up!
Put on the full armor of God, take your stand and woman UP! If God is for you, who can be against? (romans 8:31)
The Bible says fear not or do not be afraid 365 times. That’s a significant amount.
To imagine this moment when Jesus was talking to His disciples about His time on the earth coming to end. They loved Jesus and didn’t want to live in a world where He wasn’t with them. In this moment, Jesus reassures them that He is sending someone better, someone that can be with each of them at one time to help, strengthen, comfort and empower as they continue to spread the Gospel.
This life offers many, MANY opportunities to fear. There’s so many uncertainties and unknowns.
so, LET the peace of Christ rule in our hearts...