Advent Devotion - 12/23/16

"You will keep in perfect peace all those who trust in You.” Isaiah 26:3

 One of the deepest experiences I ever had with “the peace that passes all understanding” was at my grandma’s interment. It certainly wasn’t expected, but my meeting with God that day was profound and I pray, unforgettable.

 It seems odd to find peace in such a heavy place but it’s where God allowed me to understand that peace doesn’t exist apart from trusting in Him.

 As I sat on an Appalachian hillside for Grandma Jobe’s interment, I found myself “being” with God. And, as I try to write about this, I’m realizing how worthless words can sometimes be. The easiest way to describe my state while being there with God is that all my soul was perfectly still; like when the earth is hushed, blanketed by a deep snow fall. I found myself simply believing in who God says He is - a God who loves and whose heartbeat is mercy, our God who keeps His promises and redeems us, everlasting, never-changing, and almighty. In this place, I was at rest and full of His love.

 On that day, I saw a promise fulfilled. It was a holy experience that words can’t describe. And, if I didn’t believe that God is who He says He is, that day would have been very different. Anything experienced apart from God isn’t all it can be. Trust in God’s promises is paramount to experiencing peace. It is a lynchpin. The peace I felt that day came from trusting in God’s promise for a woman whose walk with God was a close one. I grew up witness to that relationship. I knew what He had in store for her. To God be the glory.

 On this amazing journey called life, I spend nearly as much time in the valley as I do on the mountain, and the pattern is… When faithful to my relationship with God, my life is sustained; apart from God, there is no real peace deep within. If I am not loyal to God, His promise will remain, but I will be missing much.     

 So during Advent, my hope is to rest in the promise of Emmanuel having been fulfilled. The Prince of Peace has come; we only need to trust in Him.  

  Beth Jones