Jehovah Shalom- The Lord is our peace
Have you ever sat next to a river, and listened to the water flow with your eyes closed, feeling the cool wind blowing through your hair? At this moment, you just relaxed and forgot about everything to imagine that picture if you’ve never done it before, or experienced a nostalgic memory with a smile. Just like that, is my experience of peace. Philippians 4:7 speaks of a kind of peace that surpasses all understanding, a kind of peace God gives, a kind of peace we find in the presence of God.
The Hebrew word “Shalom” includes notions of wholeness, harmony and well-being. The biblical concept of peace shows us that no matter the external circumstances we face we can live with a peace of mind this world cannot understand.
There are many things the world says will give us peace, having a lot of money, material possessions, or having the perfect relationship however when we read of biblical peace, we see it does not come from things we see or can touch, but is a peace that surpasses understanding, a peace that comforts in the midst of distress and chaos, a peace that comforts a grieving heart after loosing a loved one, its peace that sees us through tough situations and trials. God is a gracious, giving God.
In John 14: 27 CEV, “I give you peace, the kind of peace that only I can give. It isn’t like the peace this world can give. So don’t be worried or afraid.” Peace is being free of worry and not being afraid. God’s peace is available for everyone and is accessible whenever we need it. All of us experience His peace in different ways. Some may experience His peace while worshipping or reading the bible or simply listening to music or podcasts or maybe even when taking a walk.
Luke 2:14, Luke writes, “Praise God in heaven! Peace on earth to everyone who pleases God”, this tells us that peace is promised to everyone but most importantly to those who please God. Righteousness is related to peace. Peace is a fruit of righteousness, Isaiah 32:17 ” and the effect of righteousness will be peace, and the result of righteousness, quietness and trust forever..” Peace in this scripture is twofold, Inward peace that follows up on the indwelling of righteousness, a holy serenity and security of mind. Outward peace as Matthew Henry puts it “is a great mercy when those who by the grace of God have quiet and peaceable spirits are by the providence of God made to dwell in quiet and peaceable habitations”
In John 14:27, it says, “I give you peace, the kind of peace that only I can give. It isn’t like the peace that this world can give. So don’t be worried or afraid.” This is a promise from God that peace will be given to us so we do not need to be worried or afraid.
In John 14:27, God says He gives us peace so that we do not worry and therefore we should not be afraid. The promise of peace from God is so that we may have a sound mind. In 2 Timothy 1:7, it says, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind.” Taking these two scriptures into consideration, we will experience peace when we have a sound mind, meaning to be free of worry and not being afraid.
Peace is supernaturally given to us and not the kind the world gives. It is a wonderful gift, we need only ask to receive it. The key is prayer. We pray for peace. Peace to reign over personal circumstances, peace for nations, peace in the midst of unprecedented times.
There is a wise saying that says, “Delay does not mean Denial”, sometimes it may seem like we are not experiencing peace immediately after we pray and this is where prayer without ceasing is a place of comfort. Just because we don’t see it does not mean its not there, and although it may sometimes take awhile, its important for us to wait on the Lord. Its pivotal to be patient. When I had Covid-19, it was devastating. I had to go into isolation, my twin sister and I were placed in separate rooms and that was difficult. I battled with various emotions, in the midst of a battle I found assurance in the presence of God that I will be okay. I decided to look at the brighter side, I saw it as a way for me to work on my relationship with God. I can’t describe the peace I felt at that moment. John 14:27 says that God gives us peace but not as the world gives, and I stand on that promise. No matter the trial at hand, whatever challenges we face, when we look to God, His presence calms our anxiety and removes fear, It silences the ranging seas and puts the storms of life at rest. Like a river that keeps flowing, the soft wind blowing, that space of peace and quiet reminds me of how Good God is.