Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Thoughts of peace

"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." -John 14:27

I have always loved this verse. It's been awhile since I've thought of it though, and as I was skimming through my scriptures today I came across it again.
It seems like such a simple and beautiful phrase... only a few short lines spoken to give comfort to His disciples, for a time when He would no longer be with them. In the preceding verse He spoke of the Comforter which He would give to them, to help remind them of His love and His teachings. It's interesting that He didn't leave it at that. To be given the Holy Ghost as a comforter and teacher is an unparalleled gift, one that truly can help to strengthen us and guide us. But Jesus felt to give even more. His love was such that He wanted His followers to not just be comforted, but to enjoy peace. What I find interesting is that it isn't just peace either... He freely gives HIS peace.
When I read that small phrase "my peace I give unto you" I started thinking about what HIS peace is like. I think it goes back to the peace of conscience that He has, being the only perfect and sinless man. He has no nagging pricks of guilt or remorse, no past to be haunted by, none of the baggage we all carry as a normal part of being normal and imperfect beings. But I think His peace is also an all encompassing peace of spirit, the type of peace that comes from a full and complete knowledge of God and of His love for us. He didn't have the fleeting peace of thinking that there might be a God in heaven. He had no questions about whether or not He might be on the right path. There was no doubt for Him and no separation from the Father caused by sin or anything else. He had a knowledge of God that was a part of His very being. Often, that kind of knowledge seems like an incomprehensible mystery to most of us. We have to deal with being human, having a veil over our eyes, and struggling to reduce the space that we create between us and God through our sins. We don't have a perfect relationship with our Father. But I find it amazing that Jesus not only had (and has) that relationship, but loves us so much that He wants us to experience what it feels like. He wants us to be comforted, to know that God is real and that He cares about us. He wants us to feel HIS peace so that our hearts won't be troubled, and we won't be afraid. He knows that if we can taste of that peace, we will be more likely to really be willing to follow Him in all things, to go and do things that might normally trouble us or cause us fear. And He knows that as we follow Him and feel His peace we will be blessed with courage, strength, and the ability to do all that is required of us.


Mama D said...

I love this verse! I memorized it a few years ago to help me through some tremendous struggles. It is one of those "life lines" I grab hold of when life gets difficult.

However, true to form with your wisdom, you include new insight and truth. It is not just peace, but HIS peace, that is given to us. And when we know and feel His peace, we can live without fear and without troubled hearts.

Your timing in sharing your thoughts is uncanny (or inspired). I needed to be reminded of the power of HIS peace, and that feeling His peace really is attainable, even when life is hard.


ANTSYLLI said...

Ditto to what Mama D. said. Especially the part about it being timely (inspired). I really needed that reminder right now as I am seeking some peace among the chaos in my life. Thank you for your insight.

Leslie said...

Your insights bless me every time! Thank you for sharing!