Finding Peace In The Midst Of A Chaotic World
Recently I have really been striving to understand the truth about peace. As I go through my inner healing process and gain more and more freedom from the bondage of the occult, I find myself more and more on the receiving end of attack. As the attack came, I found myself overwhelmed by the scope of it. In the midst of the war, I found it hard to make Christ my dwelling place and home. Yet as I cried out for peace from God one morning, I heard Him say “I am your peace.”
When we think of the word ‘peace’ we think of the world’s version of peace. The peace that means absence of war or strife. The peace that I was seeking was just that; the absence of the war and the ability to feel it all pressing down on me. However, when I heard Jesus tell me that He was my peace, I was confused. If Jesus is my peace, then I needed to understand what that meant on a deeper level.
My whole life I had the world’s understanding of peace. Peace to the world means freedom from strife and chaos in your life. Let’s take a closer look at the Merriam-Webster definition of peace:
a state of tranquility or quiet: : freedom from civil disturbance
freedom from disquieting or oppressive thoughts or emotions
harmony in personal relations
a state or period of mutual concord between governments
So my beliefs on peace were rooted in this definition that being free from rage, strife, disturbance or war meant peace. In this world we have many troubles, especially now with so much political unrest, natural disasters, and threats of war or violence in other countries. When we see war or strife, especially close to home, it brings an internal chaos to us. We are filled with fear of the unknown. We have no idea how to cope with problems bigger than we can fix or handle on our own, especially problems that are completely out of our control or authority. Often times when we see chaos or strife, we want to take complete control over the situation. This control gives us a false sense of peace. However, we are trying to take over Gods authority in situations, instead of giving Him complete control and submitting to His will.
Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:6-7
Biblical peace has an entirely different definition. Lets look at the Biblical definition of peace according to its Hebrew and Greek usage.
Shalom in Hebrew is most frequently used in the Old Testament for peace. It means wholeness or completeness, harmony between two parties
Eirene in Greek is the most frequently used in the New Testament for peace. It means to join or bind together that which has been separated
The Biblical definition of peace is the opposite of the world’s view of peace. While man would seek to tame circumstances, God seeks to quiet the heart and align it with His Spirit. Man wants to resist the Spirit of God out of lack of trust and need to control. However, control does not give true peace. True peace keeps our heart and will at one with God. It brings us into a place of trust, where we ultimately hand over the reigns to Jesus and know full will that God works all things for our good.
“Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation.”
Trust in God that He is Sovereign and Good and will do what is best is a difficult concept for most to hold on too. The devil has worked our entire lives to distort the true meaning of peace and instead work us into a frenzy of being our own gods. Peace does not come naturally to man, it is a fruit of the Spirit. Fruit of the Spirit comes out of living a life submitted to Jesus. It comes by following in His Holy Spirit and living in trust and under the umbrella of His Sovereign Authority. Peace comes only from God, not from absence of pain and chaos. Where there is chaos, that is evidence of the work of evil. Instead of living in fear of strife and evil, we need to take our thoughts captive to align them back with the truths of the word of God.
The Word of God tells us that trials and tribulations are a normal part of life in this world. The devil has come to steal, kill and destroy, not to bring peace. That paired with the fact that sin has separated us from God, results in strife and chaos here on earth. It will continue to be this way until Jesus returns. We believe that having a good life means having things we want and when are lives don’t resemble to plans we had in store for ourselves, that something must be wrong with us. We believe the lie that happiness is the peace the world promises: freedom from strife. This is reinforced over and over again in the media and in the world. However, what we don’t understand is it is unrealistic, and no one has a life free from all strife.
True peace comes from a place of rest and ease within ourselves by the power of Christ alone. The peace of God allows us to connect with Him and trust in Him in the midst of the storm. It brings us to a place of submission, fully realizing that we ultimately have no control outside of our own thoughts and actions. Choosing to be humble and allow God to work all things for our good will bring us the peace that surpasses the human understanding.
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
As we begin to submit to God’s authority and plans for our lives, we will let go of our earthly desires, and our fears. We will cast them upon the throne of God and allow Him to comfort and nurture us. His perfect love will being to refine us so that when the world around us in chaos, we can stand firm on His Word instead. When we begin to align our thoughts with His words of truth in scripture, the devil has less of a chance of taking us captive to his lies.
Step by step we must come into a new understanding of peace. The world would love us to run around busying ourselves trying to make our own peace, but it is only at the feet of Jesus we will find His perfect peace.
May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.