Who doesn’t want peace in life? All of us desire to live above the harmful effects of the stressors we face day-in-and-day-out. Each of us hopes to live fearless lives. Serenity is a core desire for each and every one of us. However, the truth is, in our inner world, we wrestle with past hurts, unhealthy habits, and destructive hang-ups, leaving us with troubled souls. The good news is that we don’t have to remain where we find ourselves. God calls us to a life with Him that provides a way of entering into His peace.
Jesus declared: “Peace I leave with with; my peace I give to you.” Then, He adds: “I do not give this peace to you as the world gives” (John 14:27). Jesus is speaking of the confidence and courage that comes from the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. The world speaks of peace as the absence of conflict. The problem is that the world doesn’t have the power to provide such peace. The peace Jesus speaks of exists in the midst of conflict. The peace Jesus gives to His followers is peace with God and the actual peace of God. Peace with God comes as we receive Christ as Lord and Savior. The peace of God speaks of that which is available daily as believers place their trust in God and keep in step with His Spirit, relinquishing control of their lives to Him.
It has been said, “If God is peace, then to know Him is to bask in His peace.” The closer we draw to the Lord, the more of His peace we enjoy (see: James 4:8). We draw closer to God as we enter into the presence of the Lord through His Son (see: John 14:6). As we grow in Christ, our understanding of the forgiveness and freedom we have in Him bears fruit in greater confidence and peace. As Peter writes: “Grace and peace to you many times over as you deepen in your experience with God and Jesus, our Lord” (2 Peter 1:2). We grow as Christians through an ever-deepening personal knowledge of God and His Son Jesus. The Spirit uses this knowledge to enlarge our understanding and personal experience of God’s love and peace as we continue and grow in our relationship with Jesus Christ.
The peace Christ gives us results from hearing and responding to the message of Christ. This is why believers are called to share their faith story, their testimony (see: Rom 10:14-15). This is why one of the steps we can take to possess the Lord’s peace is to share our story. When we share our testimony of how our lives have intersected with God’s, it brings hope to others and continues to bring healing, peace, and purpose in our very own lives.
Peter writes, in the New Testament, that our stories are not merely our own, but are also opportunities to share the hope we have found in Christ (1 Peter 3:15). In Christ, we have freedom from our past (the hurts, the habits, and the hang-ups). When Christians share their story, it is used by the Spirit to draw others to salvation and hope in Christ. Further, there is healing power for us as we share our testimony. The Spirit uses it to continue the healing process in our own lives. In short, when we share our story, God allows us to be used for His good plan and to fulfill His salvific purpose (see: Acts 20:24).
John, in the book of Revelation, shares the power of story when he writes that Satan is defeated because of Christ’s finished work on the cross and because of the word of the testimony of believers (see: Rev 12:11). Our story of salvation is a powerful tool used by God to lead others to salvation and deepen His followers in His peace. This is why one of the steps to experiencing God’s peace and power in our life is to share our story.
It brings me great joy to rest in God’s peace with each of you. Let’s encourage one another to share our faith story. Let’s bask in God’s peace as we are reminded of the work he has done and is doing in our lives. Soli Deo Gloria (Glory to God Alone)!