Peace Jack Flowers
When I was a young boy I often got into arguments with my brother. At times we were quite noisy. When dad had had enough, he would cry out, “Please give me some peace and quiet.” I came to think that peace meant the lack of noise. However, remaining quiet did not bring harmony between my brother and me or between us and dad. In John 14:27, Jesus told all believers, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you.” The world’s peace is the feeling of safety and well-being. Jesus spoke of a different kind of peace. When salvation comes to our lives, God imparts the gift of the Holy Spirit. One of the fruits of His Spirit is Peace. As this new nature is operating in our lives, we can intimately connect not only with God but also with every person around us. Today we live in a world of anger. We are angry with people from the other political party, with people we think have wronged us or others, with people who get in our way, and with those who get underserved attention or gifts. Let’s be honest, there are persons we don’t like, don’t speak to, and avoid at all costs. But that is not what God wants from us.
Jesus has given us peace so that we may draw near to all, even those who offend us. In that closeness we begin to get a glimpse of their humanity. We realize that they may have family traits and scars, even heavy burdens that make life more difficult for them. Do we really think we could have done better under their circumstances? The peace of Christ inside of us makes us want to reach out to bring healing, hope, and encouragement. We learn to be patient both with those who do not have this gift of peace, and with those who have a longer and more difficult life journey to spiritual maturity. When we do connect with one of God’s children, we are as gentle and kind as we would be with a small baby. After all, we are all fragile. Let us use the gift of peace within us—not just in this season, but year-round.