“Peace I leave, my peace I give.” I remember hearing these words repeatedly as a child when I was in church.
When I was younger, I thought the “peace” referred to was in “peace and quiet..” Noise and talking at a minimal level, or not at all. Being alone. A physical kind of peace.
Now my life has become more hectic: raising kids, working and maintaining our household. It’s no longer a physical peace I crave (although a week in Hawaii sounds great), but an inner peace. Where everything seems balanced and right. Where time could stop and I would be fine.
This peace occurs when I’m walking with God. When all distractions and thoughts are set aside, and I’m focusing on communication with Christ. When God’s comfort, compassion, wisdom, and hope start as a small spark inside me, and then spread throughout my entire body.
Where God’s love and pure goodness cause me to smile with joy.
God calls us to communicate with him. Most of the time, this is in the form of prayer. We bow our heads, close our eyes, and pray to God, praising His name, and listening to His voice.
Nothing in this world can substitute for the inner harmony I feel when I’m earnestly praying to Christ.
But communication with God can also occur at other times. I find jogging on the GW Parkway trail listening to the lyrics of the Christian music in my headphones keeps my faith alive.
Seeing God work in other peoples’ lives also keeps me connected to Him. I see how the struggles and joys we face are masterfully weaved into God’s purpose.
The Bible tells us that peace is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit. (Galations 5:22-23). Peace is one of the “fruits” or results of being in a relationship with God.
Peace grows, as we trust in God. When we are anxious, the Bible tells us to give thanks to God and pray. Then the “‘peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:6-7).
Putting this into action can sometimes be difficult.
I woke up at 3am last night because I heard my daughter. She recently had knee surgery, and was quietly making whimpering sounds while still asleep, like a fragile bird that had fallen. I listen intently until the sounds stopped, and she returned to a deep sleep.
I, of course, did not.
I lay awake worried about her knee. Worried about her recovery and worried about finding the cause of her ailment.
I had to consciously put those thoughts aside and focus on prayer. It wasn’t easy. My mind kept drifting off to “what ifs?”
But eventually the Holy Spirit reminded me of God’s grace and mercy.
Jesus is our Prince of peace. These aren’t merely titles and words, but promises.
I fell back asleep, trusting that God loves us enough to provide the peace needed in this world.
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.