September 24, 2023 | Doug Sauder
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“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”—John 16:33 (NIV)
When I think about peace, I think about the story of Jesus sleeping on a boat in the middle of a terrible storm. He knew He could rest in the midst of a scary situation because He trusted the Father. He ends up calming the storm because the disciples’ woke Him up in fear of their own lives. Some versions quote Jesus as saying, “Peace! Be still!” (Mark 4:39 ESV).
I recently realized that the peace Jesus commanded over the storm was one of calming down and coming to a point of rest. This is an example of His authority in directing our circumstances; however, the peace He experienced was one that remained regardless of the circumstances. I can imagine the disciples were astonished with the peace Jesus not only had in that moment, but the peace He constantly exuded. Imagine it! Jesus never feared, never worried, never doubted, never rushed, and most certainly never mistrusted His Father.
Clearly, we are not perfect which makes us incapable of living completely free from fear, worry, or doubt. But that is why Jesus reassured His disciples in today’s Scripture which we can take hope from as well. Jesus guarantees that we will have trouble in this world. This trouble is not only from the darkness surrounding us, but it’s from our own weaknesses and imperfections as well.
In the verses right before this, He warns His disciples He will leave them soon. He is not just foreshadowing His death, but He is preparing them for His ascension into heaven after the resurrection. He knew they would fail to have perfect faith or to fully understand what He meant, and He knew that the waiting would be very difficult. Nonetheless, Jesus knew this would develop trust in them and that with the difficulty and the waiting, they would begin to experience His peace like never before.
To recap, peace from God is not just calmness. The peace Jesus promises us is the result of completeness and security in our relationship with the Father. We know this promise is true because He defeated death on our behalf and made a clear way for us to be reconnected to the Father. It is an incomprehensible peace. It is a peace that remains in the midst of a storm. And last, but certainly not least, it is a peace that comes through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit!
That is what this Scripture hinges upon. In John 14, Jesus talks about the Advocate coming to stay with them once He is gone. This Advocate will remind us of Jesus’ teaching and guide us into all truth as we keep following Him. That is why peace is a fruit of the Spirit, because our reliance on Him will lead us to experience and walk with the peace of Christ! As Jesus said in John 14:27 (NIV), “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.”
Pause: Have you been living in peace recently? It’s hard to identify sometimes, but take time to truly reflect on whether you’ve been living in Christ’s peace.
Practice: Take time to talk to God today, maybe even journal your prayer and focus on identifying where you need God’s peace in your life. Remember where He has calmed the storms in your life, and then remember that His steadiness is stronger than any of the storms around you right now.
Pray: Jesus, You are my Prince of Peace! Thank You for not only promising us peace, but for being the living example of what it looks like to walk with peace. I know I will never measure up, but I know that Your Spirit is strong within me and will help me live in peace even when the world around me is in chaos. I ask that You would help me to deepen my faith, commune with Your Spirit more often, and experience Your peace more strongly as I trust in You. Thank You for Your promises Jesus! Amen.
Samy Rodriguez has been serving with the Calvary writing team since 2020 as a senior at Calvary Christian Academy. Before going to study communications, biblical studies, and intercultural studies at Palm Beach Atlantic University, she interned with the Calvary Communications Team and was a student leader in HSM (High School Ministry). She is passionate about communicating God’s Word and looks forward to continuing to serve in ministry after college.