by Francie Winslow
(Editor’s note: This is the 2nd in a 9-part series on The Fruit of the Spirit & Evangelism, based on Galatians 5:22-23.)
“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)
Zen, yoga, even a vacation to white sandy beaches. These are all advertised as legitimate avenues to peace in our current world’s system.
But will lasting “peace” really come from those things? Do the world’s attempts at finding peace offer comfort in the face of tragedy? Are they strong enough to uproot our biggest insecurities and replace them with truth that brings an unshakable confidence?
Our world is restless and fearful. With fear of war, terror, disease, and disaster all around us, experiencing and living in the peace of Christ is a powerful way we share the hope of Christ.
Jesus didn’t just offer a piece of peace. He, the Prince of Peace, offers us all of His peace. That means fear has no place in our lives if He is the Lord of our lives.
Lives marked by the supernatural peace of Christ can be one of our strongest elements of witness in our restless world.
The overflow of His mind-boggling peace in our lives is a result of walking in the Spirit (Gal. 5:22). His peace guards our minds, passes our understanding (Phil. 4:7), and goes with us as we are sent (John 20:22).
When our world is based on fear and temporal pursuits of peace, how do we access Christ’s unshakable peace, and lead others into it?
We must first look at our own hearts with honest evaluation.
Do our thought patterns reflect the biblical reality that God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind (2 Tim. 1:7)? Or are we bound in a prison of fear just like the world around us?
How often is our response to the news headlines, a hard conversation at work, or a difficult situation with our children one of trust that results in an unexplainable peace? Are we abounding in the supernatural peace of God, even in the face of difficult times?
We must realize that the level of our peace is directly related to our awareness of God in our midst.
As a follower of Jesus, the way we live our daily lives, no matter what the day brings, can be marked by peace.
When we become aware of God’s presence in our moment, we are able to tap into the peace that is rightfully ours, as children of God in Christ.
As we abide in Christ, living aware of His nearness throughout our days, we will find Him hushing the storms of our hearts with His truth and calming our quivering fears with His steadfast love.
It’s who He is.
So each day, before we think about “doing” ministry, let us consider these three questions:
- How is my level of peace?
- How is my awareness of God’s presence?
- How can I speak Christ’s peace into a stormy heart today?
And then remember that to the degree our awareness of God’s presence increases, so will our peace. The peace that comes from experiencing God is something worth sharing with our hurting, fearful world.
Francie Winslow (@franciewinslow) speaks and blogs about how God’s real love changes our real lives and is the author of The God Experience: A 10 Week Guide to Feed Your Busy Soul. She’d love to connect with you at franciewinslow.com.