Lights part 1: Peace

As I journey through this dark period, lights are strewn all along my way.

lights path

They have overwhelmed me, each of them so unique, yet part of a bigger message from my Beloved: I love you, I’m here next to you. I will try and share as many of them as I can remember and more importantly put into words here. I believe they will be of encouragement to those of you who are going through the valley of the shadow of death

valley

Let us start with last night. For some reason I was anxious and confused, I tried to write in my journal, but with little success. I couldn’t remember when what had happened and what I’ve already written down. I was completely restless. I shot up a prayer for peace. Immediately a dark voice whispered.

“You probably need to go pray for an hour now or read your bible otherwise you won’t get the peace form above. Nothing is free, only salvation, the rest you have to do something to receive.”

In the next breath I was pleading to God to let this not be true! I asked Him to answer His servant, and quite soon before fear grips my heart.

fear heart

My husband sat with me and we watched funny video clips until I was tired and I fell into a deep sleep for 11 hours. I woke up happy and relaxed (I usually wake up slightly anxious) I got dressed and went to a coffee shop down the street for breakfast. I took out my journal and started writing, noticing the way in which the previous night’s entry ended…

I softly asked God to show me the truth, He answered tenderly. He told me that His peace was given to me:

1Co 14:33 For God is not a God of confusion but of peace… 

Php 4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

peace understanding
I was comforted, but I still wondered how do I access this heavenly peace? I read the scripture verses preceding and following Php 4:7

Php 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice.
Php 4:5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand;
Php 4:6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
Php 4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Php 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

The biggest thing that struck me was “Rejoice in the Lord always” How can one rejoice when you have no peace, when you are grieving, confused and feel like you are trapped in the dark? Let us start be defining the word “rejoice”: Timothy Keller, in his book “Walking with God through pain & suffering” says the following about rejoicing in the midst of pain:

“But we must remember that in the Bible, the “heart” is not identical to emotions. The heart is understood as the place of your deepest commitments, trusts and hopes. From these commitments flow our emotions, thoughts and actions. To “rejoice” in God means to dwell on and remind ourselves of who God is, who we are, and what he has done for us. Sometimes our emotions respond and follow when we do this, and sometimes they do not. But therefore we must not define rejoicing as something that precludes feelings of grief, or doubt, weakness, and pain. Rejoicing in suffering happens within sorrow”

I do not have much more to add to this, only that this brought relief to my wearied soul and gave me the answer as to how I can rejoice in the midst of my anxiety and confusion.  Mr. Keller’s explanation of what it means to rejoice links up well with Php 4:8 as well as Rom 8:6 “For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.” and 2Pe 1:2  “May grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.” 

As we spend more time in His presence and contemplating His word, the “knowledge of God” will fill us and as it flows in, the lies of the enemy will be washed out. That does not mean we will be immune to times of emotional suffering, but it means that we have an anchor that will prevent us from being swept away by our emotions and overtaken by the waves of lies that flood in when we are troubled. The ball is in our court. Will we submit under the truth, that God is a God of peace? That He has overcome the world? Will we soak ourselves in the Word in order that we may be able to quickly access the truth when we are placed in a spot where rejoicing does not come naturally?

Joh 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

Joh 16:33  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.”

overcome

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3 thoughts on “Lights part 1: Peace

  1. journeyupward says:

    Well said. Thank you for that. When I am heading into a depression I find that Phil 4:8 is helpful reminding me to guard my mind and think on good things–not to allow myself to get caught up in negative self talk and ruminating about how I feel. It does help me to not sink as fast whereas ruminating sends me straight down fast. Scriptures about God’s peace don’t always help me to feel it but they drive home the point that God is with me through it all even if I can’t feel Him or His peace. That is some comfort during those dark and painful times and keeps me looking towards God even when I can’t see Him or His plan. A very good piece, Charlotte.

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