I waited outside of Pizza Hut. Everyone in town that night was there and they didn’t have what we wanted to order. So, we waited. My daughter had to use the bathroom and it was going to be at least a half-hour before we got home. So while the whole family was in the van, waiting for pizza, I took my daughter inside to use the bathroom. As I stood there waiting for her, I habitually reached inside my pocket and found a piece of paper. Curiously, I read it and found John 14:27. Quoted. “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.” (NIV)
I wrote a post, previously about how I am not afraid of Coronavirus (see: Why I Am Not Afraid During This Coronavirus Pandemic). Please go read that post if you haven’t already. After I posted that, I started to feel like people may think me cocky or arrogant for saying the things I said. Then I rethought it and I didn’t feel bad about it. I’d be scared right now, with everything going on if it weren’t for Jesus in my life. That was the whole point of the post.
Which brings me back to John 14:27 – The Lord wants each of us to find our peace in Him. I don’t even remember what I was expressing anxiety about that night, but the Lord gave me a reminder that when I take my mind off of the problems in the world and turn to Him, that I can have that assurance of peace and rest that no one else can give. We all need it. We all need Him: The Prince of Peace. Jesus.
It is His pleasure to give you His peace: But the price is giving up the world and all the things of it. If you’re living in an ungodly way, you will be disconnected from fellowship with the Father and you’ve given up rights to the peace Jesus promised when He said, “the peace I give is a gift the world can not give.” (NLT) So many people don’t want to be Christians because they don’t want to be bound by rules or they think God is a hard taskmaster who inflicts punishment on His people for the slightest inkling of sin. I say those people have never been led to the cross.
Once one gets a revelation that the God of the universe came to earth in humility to be born as a baby, die and go to hell in my place and rise again so that I don’t have to experience everlasting punishment, he or she has been shown the mercy of the cross and the beauty of the broken Savior who is now risen, victorious over sin and death.
As believers, we are called to live in the light and show unbelievers the Way. Yes, we make mistakes. But each act of unwillful sin has been paid for and the Lord is not hanging that stuff over our heads, angry at us. When I am reminded of this (and I must be often), I am time after time, in awe of Jesus. And I have that peace in my heart that surpasses all understanding (see Philippians 4:7).
Am I anxiety-free every day? No (I wish!). Am I stress-free every day? Do all of my plans go as I want to? No. Am I happy every single day? No. But I know who holds the world (and me) in His hands. I know that He will never leave or forsake me. And I trust Him.